The structure of the top of this table is made up of a one large rectangular section and two half moon leaves which fold up and rest on a fold out gate leg to form an oval. Each table section consisted of a quarter sawn oak substrate.The oak boards are edged on the end grain sides with strips of oak jointed with a tongue and groove joint. The grain running perpendicular to the central boards.
I believe this design of substrate is only found on furniture designed by Thomas Sheraton. The reason for them is that the table is only veneered on one side only and will want to pull the table top out of shape.Modern practice is to veneer a substrate on both sides.The strips are to try and maintain stability,to keep a flat table top.
Unfortunately the damage caused on this table is because of its original construction.The central boards want to expand and contract as all wood naturally does but the end strips do not allow this.Also you have two separate boards expanding and contracting in different directions,so the veneer glued to the surface is pulled in different directions resulting in a buckled torn veneer.( please see photographs) Further damage has been done by previous repairs,the central veneer has been scraped down in an attempt to level the surface after the table has been cut and reglued to try and solve a split in the table,poor alignment leading to scraping the surface down to get it level and going through the veneer.
Further losses include missing tulip wood crossbanding,missing stringing lines,the boxwood stringing lines nolonger meet to make the oval design after loss in width to the central board due to previous repairs.Edge banding is missing,or replaced with the wrong woods. Surface veneers are lifting in many areas.The surface has a shadow of a cloth mark,causing discolouration from where the sun has bleached the surrounding veneer but not where the cloth was.Two of the mortise joints in the table base have worked loose.The surface polish finish has deteriorated and become opaque hiding the beauty of the flame Mahogany grain beneath.