Glossary of Terms,
Table Chair: Armchair or settle with hinged tabletop as the back.
Tablet Chair: Armchair with one flat are wide enough to use as a writing table. Frequent in American Windsor types.
Tabouret: (From tabour, a small drum.) Low upholstered footstool, French, 18th century.
Tailpiece: A tongue on the back of some Windsor chair seats, designed to receive two spindles that act as a brace for the bow.
Tallboy: Highboy or chest-on-chest, a wide low chest carrying a slightly narrower taller chest. The top tier of drawers is often divided into two or three.
Tambour: A door of thin, flexible wood strips mounted on heavy fabric while slides in a groove either horizontally or vertically.
Taper: Diminishing toward a point, characteristic of furniture legs, round, or square.
Tapestry: Woven fabric of wool and linen or silk with representational or abstract design, used as an upholstered cover.
Tavern Table: Low oblong table on simple framework of turned or square members; chiefly American and English, 18th and early 19th centuries.
Tea Cart or Wagon: A mobile server; often with drop leaves, tray and drawer. Originally an 18th century piece, it has evolved into today's bar cart, barbecue cart, etc.
Tenon: Tongue or projecting part of the wood that is fitted into a corresponding hole or mortise.
Term: Pedestal, plinth, or pillar, often carrying a bust or decorative figure, used as accents in decorative compositions.
Tester: Canopy of a four-post or draped bed, either wood or fabric.
TÍte-#-tÍte: Small two-seat sofa or love seat of the 19th century in which the two seats face in opposite directions, the backs forming an S-curve.
Therm Foot: Tapered foot of rectangular plan. Spade foot.
Therm Leg: Four-sided or square tapered leg.
Thumb Molding: Convex molding shaped in a flattened curve, like the profile of a thumb.
Ticking: Woven fabric used to cover mattresses, box springs, and pillows.
Till: Drawer or compartment in desks, chests, etc., for money, jewels, etc. They are often made with secret locks or springs.
Tilt-Top Table: A small, pedestal-based table with hinged top which may be tilted to hang vertically when not in use.
Tongue And Groove: Wood joint, in which a continuos projecting member fits into a similar rabbet or groove.
Tooth Ornament: Carved ornamental repeat molding, like dentils. Also called "dogtooth."
Tochere: A floor lamp which casts light upward. Originally a pedestal or stand to hold a candelabrum.
Tortoise Shell: Shell of a sea turtle, often used for inlays in combination with other materials.
Torus: Bold convex round molding, usually in circle of 1/2 inch or more, sometimes flattened.
Tow: Flax fiber used as upholstery stuffing in place of hair in inexpensive furniture.
Tracery: Delicate latticelike forms of bars and lines with spaces for glass or openings, derived from Gothic windows in which a framework within the large opening was necessary to sustain the glass, which at first was in small sections. Tracery, when it encloses glass, should properly, actually separate pieces of glass, but modern commercial work merely uses a cutout pattern of filigree over a pane of glass.
Tray Table: Folding stand used to support a tray.
Trefoil: Three-cusp or three-arc ornament characteristic of Gothic work. Usually inscribed within a circle.
Trestle Table: Originally, all tables were merely loose boards placed upon trestles or horses. In the Middle Ages the "dormant table" was a permanent structure of table with trestles attached; this became the fixed-table type. The trestle form survived, as distinguished from the four legged or pedestal table, in various arrangements of posts and feet, more or less ornate, in all styles to the present.
Triple Dresser: Long dresser with three tiers of drawers and/or compartments.
Tripod Table: A small table mounted on a pedestal terminating in three outward-flaring legs.
Trivet: Three-legged metal table or stand used near a fireplace to warm dishes.
Truckle Bed: Trundle bed.
Trumpet Turning, Leg: Turned leg with flaring profile of a trumpet turned upward. A distinguishing feature of the William and Mary style.
Trundle Bed: Low rolling frame fitted as a bed, designed to roll under a larger bed.
Truss: Ornamental brace or bracket.
Tuckaway Table: Compact folding table with cross-legs which fold together to permit the top leaves to drop close together. Early American modification of a narrow English gateleg table.
Tudor: English period (1485-1688) during which massive oak furniture maintains straight, square, stiff Gothic lines but show Continental Renaissance influences in elaborate bas relief carving. Tables and chairs have low stretchers, melon-bulbous legs. The Tudor rose motif is common throughout entire period.
Tudor Arch: Elliptical arch pointed in the center, representative of the English Tudor style.
Tudor Rose: Carved conventionalized rose motif, symbolic of the Tudors.
Tufting: Means of anchoring the cover on upholstered furniture or mattress by sewing through the filler, often with buttons; arranged to form a pattern (rows of squares, "biscuit tufting," or staggered to create a diamond form, "diamond tufting").
Tulip: A conventionalized pattern suggesting the tulip flower and leaf, carved or painted.
Turning: Turning, one of the most ancient wood-working processes, is done by the application of cutting tools to the rotating surface. The device for rotating or turning the wood is called a lathe. This is the oldest idea in wood-working machinery. Egyptian lathes were operated by a bowstring; later lathes were worked by treadles. In the Middle Ages, a form of spring lathe depended on the elasticity of a wood lever alternately winding and unwinding a winch. Probably the earliest application of water power and later, stream power was to the lathe, so that in all ages turning has been convenient and direct method of treating decoratively.
Tuxedo: A sofa, with rectangular side panels or arms which join to, and are the same height as, the back.
Tweed: A wool, cotton or synthetic fabric fashioned of two or more colors of yarn dyed before weaving.
Twin Bed: Uncommon until the 20th century. Sheraton mentions the idea, suggesting a "summer bed" of two narrow units united by a arched canopy.
Twist: Spiral or screw turning.