R.W. Symonds, Thomas Tompion, His Life and Work, Batsford, 1951, pp.116, 184 & 280, figs. 116 & 155 (clock and dial)
The extract from Symonds's notes for Tompion No. 51 reads;
fig. 115; Miniature repeating clock, No. 51. No striking train. To fit the movement into a space as small as possible, the train is so arranged that the winding hole is at 8 o'clock instead of the usual 6 o'clock position. Ebony case with fire-gilt mounts
In the collection of Mr J.W. Howes
Tompion's most prolific clocks were his striking table clocks which measured between 14-15 in. high. His standard size timepiece table clocks were 12-13 in. high whilst his larger table clocks, with inverted bell tops were 16-18 in. high. The exceptions were Tompion's specials, notably his grande sonnerie clocks such as the Selby-Lowndes Tompion at 27 in. and the Mostyn Tompion which measures 28 in. Conversely the smallest recorded clock is Tompion 222, a silver-mounted clock reputedly made for The Royal Court, which stands just 6¾ inches high.
The present clock stands just under 10 in. high and is one of just two recorded miniature timepiece table clocks by Tompion. The second clock is illustrated alongside No. 51 in Symonds's book, he lists it as an unnumbered clock. Recent research has revealed that this clock is in fact numbered 47 on the front door sill, in the same position as No. 51. At the time of manufacture, these two timepieces were amongst the smallest clocks ever made in England.
We are grateful to Jeremy Evans Esq, for his kind assistance with this catalogue entry.