Following the introduction of tea in the latter part of the 17th Century, japanned and lacquer trays became popular for the tea equipage and indeed were originally known as 'Tea Tables'. Early in George I's reign 'Four India tea boards' are recorded in the inventory of the Duke of Montagu's furniture at Boughton. Later in the 18th Century, Sir Alexander Boswell, writing about social habits in Edinburgh, refers to 'The Indian Tray, with Indian china graced'. A related black and gold-japanned tray, decorated with the arms of the Tower family of Weald Hall, is illustrated in P. Macquoid and R. Edwards, The Dictionary of English Furniture, London, rev. ed., 1954, vol. III, p. 347, fig. 3.