2 July 2004
A George III two-day marine chronometer with octangonal mahogany box
John Roger Arnold, No. 16/106. Circa 1791
The circular silvered Roman and Arabic dial signed JOHN. R. ARNOLD LONDON No. 16 with large diameter subsidiary seconds at VI, delicate blued steel seconds hand with button counterpoise, spade form blued steel hour and minute hands, the movement with four turned cylindrical pillars with blued steel screws on the backplate signed John Arnold & Son London No. 16/106 Inv. et fec. and further signed Improved by Urban Jürgensen. Copenhagen 1823., the escapement with later(?) balance cock with rose-cut diamond endstone within a screwed châton, Arnold's YZ balance with temperature screws and blued steel helical spring, Arnold's detent escapement with jewelled passing stone and now with Jürgensen's double 'scape wheels, the octangonal mahogany box with revolving brass winding shutter in the base (lacking return spring), the lid with circular glazed window with turned brass bezel, the base section veneered in strips of ebony; together with an Arnold-type brass tipsy winding key and later(?) red velvet lined leather octagonal slip case
6¾ in. (17 cm.) diam. top lid, 4 1/8 in. (10.5 cm.) high
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Hans Staeger, 100 Years of Precision Timekeepers from John Arnold to Arnold & Frodsham, Stuttgart, 1997, pp. 313-4, illus. nos. 1-6 & pp. 328-330, illus. nos. 5 & 6
Hans Staeger op. cit. writes;
This marine chronometer was fitted with a double escape wheel by Urban Jürgensen in 1832 who published the escapement for the first time in the Repertory of Arts in 1823. It is possible that Jürgensen built the double escape wheel into the present chronometer as a present for John Roger Arnold since the dial is not signed Arnold & Son but John Roger Arnold. Urban Jürgensen was apprenticed to his father and had also trained with Houriet in Switzerland, Abraham Louis Breguet and Berthoud.
Very few octagonal boxed marine chronometers by Arnold have survived to date.
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