Mythological GRIFFINS In The Mall!

So I went in the Midtown MM Antique mall at 4443 E Speedway and look at what I found! The owners just brought it in today and I have to say it is one of the most beautiful pieces of antique furniture I’ve ever seen. 

Antique tiger oak buffet

This antique buffet is much more than just a buffet. It features exceptional tiger oak. It’s perfectly made. It’s in excellent condition. And holding up the two front corners are a pair of marvelously hand carved griffins.


The griffin is a fascinating mythical creature whose roots reach from western Europe to the Eastern edges of India. In any mythology, he is portrayed as a mix between an eagle and a lion. He is a kingly mythical creature who commands deep respect.  Griffin mythology reads a lot like dragon mythology in that griffins were thought to be very wise and wily characters who spent a good deal of time seeking out and guarding gold and treasures.   

Fireplace fender – detail

Some historians have guessed at a possible origin of griffin mythology: There have been several fossil findings of the pentaceratops – a dinosaur from the Cretaceous period – that were located near known gold veins. These findings may have been influential in the ancient belief in griffins. The pentaceratops had a beaked face with a four-legged body. Anyone digging for gold in an area with these bones would find a creature whose bones looked very much like what one would imagine a griffin’s bones to look like. From there, it’s not hard to figure out why people would imagine a griffin looking as it does and being known for digging for and hoarding gold.

Griffin bookends

Finally, the buffet was sold by Captain William Gadsby of Portland, Oregon. Mr. Gadsby was of English birth and lineage. He was born January 18, 1859, in Birmingham, England, where the family name has long been associated with mercantile enterprises. He joined the British army. He was stationed in Ireland and India and eventually settled in Oregon where he went into the furniture business, becoming quite revered in the Portland community.

The beautiful advertisements for this circa 1900 Portland furniture business have an obvious arts and crafts influence, which was popular at the time.

So come on into the mall and check out this stunning piece of furniture. It is a sight to see.

Griffin statuary


Carol Fenn 6-2017