This handsome table, with its striking architectural arches and unusual design, stands as a prime example of the Russian passion for the Gothic during the second quarter of the 19th century. Although the specific origins of this table have not been traced, it is in line with many royal commissions of the era. Inspired by the Gothic Revival which began to flourish in England in the early Victorian period, Tzar Nicholas I commissioned Scottish architect Adam Menelaws to design a small house on the grounds of Peterhof for his family to escape the daily pressures and grandeur of court life. The Cottage Palace, also known as the Alexandria Cottage after Empress Alexandra Feodorovna, was completed in 1829, and became the permanent summer residence of the Tsar's family. The house featured ornate stucco-work ceilings, fan-vault style molding and extensive suites of furniture featuring gothic decorative elements including pierced trefoils, arches and tracery, as illustrated in E. Ducamp, ed., Imperial Palaces in the Vicinity of St. Petersburg: Peterhof, Watercolours, Paintings and Engravings from the XVIIIth and XIXth Centuries, Paris, 1992, p. 56-61, pl. 24-25. Similarly, in 1832 Tsar Nicholas I commissioned The Gothic Service, an extensive porcelain dinner and tea service for the Winter Palace from the Imperial Porcelain Factory, St. Petersburg. This imperial patronage influenced aristocrats as the Neo-Gothic style made its way into stately homes and palaces across the Empire, inspiring creations such as this evidently unique table.