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A RARE VICTORIAN GILT-BRASS QUARTER-CHIMING GIANT SKELETON CLOCK OF MONTH DURATION
A RARE VICTORIAN GILT-BRASS QUARTER-CHIMING GIANT SKELETON CLOCK OF MONTH DURATION
A RARE VICTORIAN GILT-BRASS QUARTER-CHIMING GIANT SKELETON CLOCK OF MONTH DURATION
2 More
A RARE VICTORIAN GILT-BRASS QUARTER-CHIMING GIANT SKELETON CLOCK OF MONTH DURATION
5 More
This lot will be removed to Christie’s Park Royal.… Read more PROPERTY FROM A PRIVATE COLLECTION
A RARE VICTORIAN GILT-BRASS QUARTER-CHIMING GIANT SKELETON CLOCK OF MONTH DURATION

ATTRIBUTED TO JOHN MOORE & SONS, LONDON, NUMBERED 11403, CIRCA 1851

Details
A RARE VICTORIAN GILT-BRASS QUARTER-CHIMING GIANT SKELETON CLOCK OF MONTH DURATION
ATTRIBUTED TO JOHN MOORE & SONS, LONDON, NUMBERED 11403, CIRCA 1851
The substantial gilt-brass frame with lobed and pierced 7/16 in. (1.1 cm.) thick plates intricately engraved to front and rear, raised on four waisted feet of rectangular section, the front feet each stamped with serial number '11403', the engraved openwork 20 3/8 in. (51.7 cm.) diameter chapter ring with stylised foliate scrolls and scalloped outer edge, the points indicating minutes, flanking twelve blue opaque glass oval plaques applied with finely engraved Roman numerals, with pierced and foliate chased hour and minute hands, the month-going three train triple-fusee movement with dead beat escapement and engraved steelwork, quarter chiming on a nest of eight bells and striking the hour on a large gong mounted on a stand to the rear, the steel rod pendulum with fine adjustment and T-bar suspension with applied cast foliate ornament to both sides of the bob, raised on an oval gilt-brass base with foliate engraved border, mounted on a later mahogany plinth with glazed display case; with crank winding key
The clock: 25 1/8 in. (64 cm.) high; 24 in. (61 cm.) wide; 13 1/8 in. (33.3 cm.) deep
Overall, including case: 32 ½ in. (82.5 cm.) high; 31 ¾ in. (80.6 cm.) wide; 18 ¼ in. (46.4 cm.) deep
Provenance
Sir Vincent Henry Penalver Caillard (1856-1930), Wingfield House, Trowbridge, Wiltshire.
Knight Frank & Rutley, Contents of Wingfield House, 10-13 November 1930, Lot 226.
Where probably acquired by Mr. Herbert Christopher Hayes, Bristol.
Thence by descent to the current owner.
Special Notice

This lot will be removed to Christie’s Park Royal. Christie’s will inform you if the lot has been sent offsite. Our removal and storage of the lot is subject to the terms and conditions of storage which can be found at Christies.com/storage and our fees for storage are set out in the table below - these will apply whether the lot remains with Christie’s or is removed elsewhere. Please call Christie’s Client Service 24 hours in advance to book a collection time at Christie’s Park Royal. All collections from Christie’s Park Royal will be by pre-booked appointment only. Tel: +44 (0)20 7839 9060 Email: cscollectionsuk@christies.com. If the lot remains at Christie’s it will be available for collection on any working day 9.00 am to 5.00 pm. Lots are not available for collection at weekends.

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Giles Forster
Giles Forster

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Lot Essay

JOHN MOORE & SONS
This exceptional, exhibition quality clock was almost certainly produced by John Moore & Sons of Clerkenwell, London. The measurements of the present clock closely match those of the skeleton clock Moore & Sons made for the 1851 Great Exhibition and the basic frame style also matches the other giant size clock exhibited by Derek Roberts (‘The Art & Craft of the Clockmaker IV’, 1997). Two other clocks of this type were produced, one for the Tsar of Russia and another in an American collection (see Roberts, p. 118). A publicity brochure of 1877 states the number of ‘house’ clocks produced at over fifteen thousand, in correlation with the serial number of the present clock and those others recorded below.

John Moore & Sons was originally founded in 1791 as Handley & Moore, both of whom were apprenticed to John Thwaites, a renowned clock maker. After the death of Handley in 1824 the Moore family continued the business throughout the 19th Century. John Moore & Sons were known for the production of fine turret and skeleton clocks but also supplied machinery to ships and even lighthouses. As with their competition Thwaites & Reed, the vast majority of their production bear the names of other retailers.

These skeleton clocks however were clearly designed as a tour de force for the international exhibitions of the period. Clockmakers vied with each other to create increasingly sophisticated and enthralling pieces, of which this is a fine example. As high grade manufacturers, Moore & Sons exhibited at the Great Exhibitions of 1851 and 1862, winning a prize medal for clocks at the latter. The last of the clock making Moores, Henry James died in 1899.

Skeleton clocks recorded:
1 - The 1851 Great Exhibition clock - giant size, three-train, Aviva Art Collection, Norwich.
2 - Unnumbered, retailed by Losada - giant size, three-train, with Derek Roberts, 1997.
3 - No. 11403 - the present clock, giant size, three-train.
4 - No. 11477 - two-train, Sotheby’s, London, 24 July 1986.
5 - No. 11560 - two train, Langmaid Collection, Sotheby’s, New York, 6 April 2004, lot 35.
6 - No. 12742 - large, three-train, Bonhams, London, 9 July 2013, lot 14.
7 - No. 12852 - two-train, Sotheby’s, Belgravia, 27 November 1974.


COMPARATIVE LITERATURE
F. B. Royer-Collard, Skeleton Clocks, London, 1969, pp. 141-145
D. Roberts, British Skeleton Clocks, Woodbridge, 1987, pp. 115-118

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