Designed in the Louis XV picturesque manner, this clock 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. This celebrated model is displayed in several collections, an identical example signed by Jean-Joseph de Saint-Germain and originating from the Châteaux de Saint-Cloud and the Tuileries, is exhibited at the Musée de Louvre, Paris (OA5168), and illustrated in H. Ottomeyer, P. Pröschel, 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 Aschaffenburg and the Fitzwilliam Museum, Cambridge, are illustrated, ibid. figs. 2.8.7 and 2.8.9.
A related clock, sold in these Rooms, 5 July 1973, lot 31, and now in the J. Paul Getty Museum, Malibu, California, (Accession number 73.DB.85), is illustrated and discussed in A. Sassoon and G. Wilson, Decorative Arts, A Handbook of the Collections of the J. Paul Getty Museum, Malibu, 1986, p. 41, fig. 88.