4 July 2007
PROPERTY FROM THE EDWARD AND MILLICENT CAREW-SHAW BEQUEST, TO BENEFIT MEDICAL RESEARCH AT THE HEBREW UNIVERSITY OF JERUSALEM
A Charles II ebony and gilt-brass mounted two-train quarter-striking eight day table clock
Thomas Tompion, London, No.16. Circa 1682
The case with gilt-brass foliate-tied handle to the cushion-moulded top applied with red cloth-backed foliate cast gilt-brass mounts, glazed sides, the front door with foliate gilt-metal fret to the upper rail, mount to the lower rail and escutcheons to the sides, the inside front door sill stamped with the serial number 16, the moulded base on block feet, the 6¼ in. square dial with scored line border and signed in small script along the lower edge Tho: Tompion Londini fecit, with winged cherub mask spandrels to silvered Roman and Arabic chapter ring with sword-hilt half hour markers, finely matted centre, later shutters to winding holes, possibly later blued steel hands, with latches to the dial feet and to the seven ringed pillars, twin gut and fusees with verge escapement, calibrated pear-shaped bob, later steel holdfast (pendulum originally held by a catch to inside of left door jamb), hour striking on large bell and quarter-striking on large and small bell, the tulip-engraved back plate with repeat signature on a rectangular reserve and also numbered 16 to top left, later blued steel push/pull lever for the winding shutters with cords to each side; movement with alterations
13½ in. (34 cm.) high, handle down
Together with a copies of R.W. Symonds, Thomas Tompion, His Life and Work, Batsford, 1951 and Kenneth Ullyett, In Quest of Clocks, Rockliff, 1950.
The Edward and Millicent Carew-Shaw bequest;
The Property of the late George Oakley Fisher, Sotheby's London, 6 July 1934, lot 130.
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Illustrated, R.W.Symonds, Thomas Tompion, His Life and Work, Batsford, 1951, figs.113 and 173.
Jeremy Evans, Thomas Tompion at the Dial and Three Crowns, AHS, 2006.
The movement of No.16 presents some fascinating conundrums and feasibly may point to an evolutionary moment in Tompion's thinking. It has a notably sophisticated striking movement for such an early numbered clock. No.16 left the workshop with a capacity to deliver 2720 blows from the strike train. This is almost double what a standard striking and repeating clock would require. With this number of blows its original concept may have been to strike the (three) quarters on two small bells and then the hour on a further bell. As currently restored the clock strikes the quarters on a single bell and incorporates the hour bell as the secondary quarter bell. This work was probably executed after the 1934 sale and possibly by Charles Hobson of Hove.
No VAT will be charged on the hammer price, but VAT at 15% will be added to the buyer's premium which is invoiced on a VAT inclusive basis.
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