The clock, designed in the Louis XV picturesque manner, celebrates the Triumph of Love and derives from Ovid's Metamorphoses concerning plants, animals and the pagan gods' ability to commune with mortals. Jupiter, the father of the gods, is represented as the loving abductor, who, seeing the nymph Europa gathering flowers by the shore, adopted the guise of a bull to carry her away to the consternation of her companions.
The present clock is a variation on the celebrated model displayed in several collections, typically with a further pair of attendant figures at the base; an example signed by Jean-Joseph de Saint-Germain and originating from the Château de Saint-Cloud and the Tuileries, is exhibited at the Musée de Louvre, Paris (OA5168), and illustrated in H. Ottomeyer, P. Proschel, et. al., Vergoldete Bronzen, Munich, 1986, vol. I, p. 125, fig. 2.8.8. Related models with slight variants in the foliage and form from the collections at Schloss Johannisburg, Aschaffenburg and the Fitzwilliam Museum, Cambridge, are illustrated, ibid. figs. 2.8.7 and 2.8.9.
Joseph Leonard Roque, mâitre 1770, recorded working until 1790.
Georges-Adrien Merlet, 1754-c.1802. The son of a grocer, Merlet was one of the three best known enamellers in Paris during the latter half of the 18th century. The other two were Jean Coteau (1739-1812) and Gobin Etienne, known as Dubuisson.