The arms are those of Vereker impaling O'Grady for John, 3rd Viscount Gort and his wife Maria (d. 1854), daughter of the 1st Viscount Guillamore, whom he married in 1814. Viscount Gort was Tory M.P. for Limerick from 1817-20, later becoming Mayor of Limerick in 1831.
The tables have a fascinating if not entirely clear history, having been separated at some point before being reunited following sales from Nantlys, North Wales, and Lyons Demense, Co. Kildare, However, their conception seems to have been rooted in the picturesque East Cowes Castle designed and built by John Nash on the Isle of Wight.
The castle was built in 1798, in Nash's characteristic 'Gothick' style which he employed to great effect in several country houses such as Luscombe Castle in Devon. In Mason's Guide to the Isle of Wight, 1876, East Cowes Castle was described as '...a large castellated mansion and when beheld from the sea, or the opposite banks of the Medina, with its towers and battlements rising above the luxuriant plantations around, [it] has a fine and pleasing effect'. So pleasing in fact that when Charles Vereker, 2nd Viscount Gort saw East Cowes Castle he was sufficiently impressed to commission Nash to build something very similar, Lough Cutra, in Galway. The house was to be the Gort family seat from around 1811 until debt forced its sale in 1851.
Meanwhile East Cowes Castle was sold after Nash's death in 1835 to the Earl of Shannon, and again in 1846 when furniture and paintings were also dispersed. But by 1906 the Castle had been acquired by John Vereker, 6th Viscount Gort also more famously known as Field Marshal John Vereker, 6th Viscount Gort VC, GCB, CBE, DSO & Two Bars, MVO, MC (d.1946). He had a distinguished army career and commanded the British Expeditionary Force who defended France against the German invasion in 1940. East Cowes Castle became Lord Gort's retreat from military duties, but ironically was requisitioned by the Army during the war. As a result, it fell into terminal disrepair and was finally demolished in 1960.
The tables are designed in the Elizabethan/Jacobean style promoted by architect/designers in the early 19th century. Ackermann’s Repository of Arts illustrated an 'Elizabethan’ chair in September 1817, and George Smith used the term in 1828. Documented suites of furniture include those designed by Anthony Salvin (d.1881) for Mamhead, Devon, around 1827 - 33, and for Scotney Castle, Kent, around 1835 - 43 (Edward T. Joy, English Furniture 1800 - 51, London, 1977, p.104). The style continued to be commercially popular with Richard Bridgens' first pattern book, Furniture with Candelabra and Interior Decoration, published in 1838 among the most influential, and the fashion was perpetuated by the likes of Henry Whitaker in Treasury of Designs, 1847. Salvin himself had been trained under John Nash, so furniture of this type would have been entirely appropriate in both East Cowes Castle and Lough Cutra.