c.1760 Swiss Ormolu and Painted Wood Dutch-Striking and Musical Neuchatel Clock

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c.1760 Swiss Ormolu and Painted Wood Dutch-Striking and Musical Neuchatel Clock
Inv. #: G138
Maker:

Possibly Pierre Jaquet-Droz.The shaped two piece transitional case and original bracket are elaborately decorated with polychrome figures and floral sprays on a dark green ground. It is elaborately adorned with well-cast and chased ormolu mounts that include scrolling foliage, pierced frets to the sides, a glazed door with cupid’s attributes and large urn finial.

Case:

The shaped two piece transitional case and original bracket are elaborately decorated with polychrome figures and floral sprays on a dark green ground. It is elaborately adorned with well-cast and chased ormolu mounts that include scrolling foliage, pierced frets to the sides, a glazed door with cupid’s attributes and large urn finial.

Dial:

The large one piece white porcelain dial transitions from concave to convex, has large Roman numerals for the hours, Arabic five-minute marks and finely pierced and engraved ormolu hands.

Movement:

The large time and dutch striking movement has a crown-wheel escapement, a silk thread suspension, the fast/slow out the front, carries the steel strike work on the backplate, is stamped ‘960’ and strikes by torsion on two bells above.

The large musical movement has shaped pillars, a chain fusee, an adjustable butterfly type fly, is wound out the side, is stamped ‘990’, has a six inch pinned barrel and plays 10 tunes on 11 bells by 19 numbered hammers. It has manual adjustments for on/off and to switch between automatic tune change and a single tune.

The clock strikes the hour on a low bell each hour and also plays the last hour on a high bell at the half-hour. The musical movement is tripped after each hour strike or by pull string.

Notes:

Pierre Jaquet-Droz (1721-1790) was one of the leading clock and automaton makers of La Chaux-de-Fonds. He had an inventive nature and could count the king of Spain, King Ferdinand VI, as one of his clients.

Since the ‘6’ and ‘9’ stamps are the same stamp with reverse orientation, we believe it is possible the numbers stamped on the movements were supposed to be the same, but for a careless worker.

The striking is slightly different than traditional dutch striking as the half-hour does not announce the next hour, but repeats the last.

For a clock with a similar musical movement see: Antiquroum, Important Modern and Vintage Timepieces, Nov. 11, 2012, Lot 405.

Size: 54.5 in. (with bracket)
Retail Price: $ 25,000.

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