that considerations of utility were of paramount importance. He recognised that the sideboard had to be looked at, and therefore he rendered it as presentable as possible; but he constantly bore in mind the fact that, after all, its appearance was, strictly speaking, but a minor consideration, so he worked accordingly.
The reception of the smaller plate, the temporary storage and cooling of wine bottles, baize-lined asylums for the safe keeping of plates, etc., etc., had to be provided for before anything else was thought of; and though, like Heppelwhite, this designer aimed at combining elegance and utility in all his productions, it is impossible, after studying all his works, not to come to the conclusion that he regarded the latter as more indispensable than the former, though neither was by any means, or under any circumstances, neglected.
That he always had the complete effect in view, I need hardly say, and he was particular that it should not be interfered with more than was absolutely necessary even by essential details of construction, as, for example, in arranging the cupboard door " to hide itself in the end as much as possible, both for look and secrecy/' and in the substitution of the almost imperceptible thumb-spring for the more apparent and equally effectual turn-buckle. These are small, and, maybe, in the eyes of some people, insignificant points, but in the observation of them reposes the secret of much of Sheraton's greatness. Furthermore, inasmuch as the sideboard often constituted a sort of domestic altar for the display of family plate, it seemed to this designer entitled to have a set illumination of its own, to 44bring out" to full advantage the charms of the silver proudly arranged upon it. Hence he provided the brass branches for the reception of candles—as perfect a means of artificial lighting as has yet been found, notwithstanding their disadvantages. These branches were made as decorative as circumstances would permit. And so might continue to discuss detail after detail, but I imagine
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