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The Worshipful Company of Clockmakers
The Worshipful Company of Clockmakers - founded in London by Royal Charter in 1631 - began assembling its collection of clocks, watches and extraordinary objects in 1814, and continues to do so to the present day. This collection forms the basis of the Clockmakers' Museum and includes works by many of the greatest names in horology.
Marine chronometer by E. Barthet, found on an abandoned ship
Marine chronometer by E. Barthet, Marseilles, France c.1840. Gimballed wooden box, with carry handle and sliding inspection hatch to top. Movement contained in a removable cannister. Silvered dial with central minute hand and subsidiary dials for hours and seconds; also a thermometer. Signed 'E Barthet A Marseille No 10' and 'Reaumur' under the thermometer; a reference to the Réaumur temperature scale. Fusee movement with double links to the fusee chain. Spring detent escapement with endwise adjustment. Two arm compensation balance, with spherical shaped balance spring. 30 hour duration.
Watch movement with a quarter-repeating mechanism of early design by Thomas Tompion.
Watch movement with a quarter repeating mechanism of early design, by Thomas Tompion, c. 1691-2. Dial missing. Verge escapement, balance spring with 5 turns. Tulip pillars. Signed 'Tho. Tompion, London'.
Wandering hour watch by Sinclare, Dublin, c.1690
Watch with wandering hour dial by Gordon D. Sinclare, Dublin, c.1690. Silver case, with engraved back and bezel. Engraved silver dial, signed Sinclare. Wandering hour function comprising a semi circular slot in the dial , behind which is a blued steel disc with aperture for the hour figure, acting as pointer. Minute hand missing. Verge escapement with large balance, backplate signed 'Sinclare. Dublin. 146'.
Watch with mock pendulum, by M. Martinot
Watch by M.Martinot, Avignon, France, c.1700. Case made of gilt metal, covered in polished sharks skin. Dial made of repousse gilt brass, featuring a bust of Louis XIV, also with enamel hour plaques and inner enamel band. Watch wound through centre of dial. Short steel hand. Movement with verge escapement, Egyptian pillars and rack and pinion regulation. The balance and balance cock are very large; the latter with a section cut away to reveal a bob on the balance, known as a mock pendulum. Signed on movement 'M. Martinot A Avignon'.
Silver watch in the shape of a Tudor rose by William Clay
Watch in a silver-gilt case, cast into the pattern of a Tudor rose, by William Clay, England c.1640. Silver-gilt dial with an engraved floral centre. Movement with verge escapement and a train of three wheels and worm-and-wheel set up. The balance spring has one turn in its coil and is likely to have been added very early, necessitating the raising of the balance cock. Signed ‘William Clay London’.
'Dutch forgery' watch signed John Wilter
'Dutch forgery' watch, signed John Wilter, Europe, c.1780. Gold coloured pair case, outer in repoussé style, but probably cast. Inner case stamped RRV but with no hallmark. Gold coloured champlevé dial with arcaded minute ring, signed 'Wilter, London'. Continental style hands. Movement with verge escapement, and balance bridge instead of balance cock. Signed on the movement ‘John Wilter, London’. Fine English type chain, seal and key.
104Square-shaped watch by Francis Raynsford
Silver square-shaped watch by Francis Raynsford, London, c.1700. Silver case covered in leather studded with silver pins, which form a monogram or cypher on the rear of the case. Square champlevé dial, with subsidiary seconds dial. Steel hands. Movement with verge escapement, and a stop lever which engages with the escape-wheel, and is operated through the dial. Signed ‘Fr. Raynsford, London’ on the movement.
Wax portrait of Benjamin Lewis Vulliamy (1780 – 1854)
Wax portrait of Benjamin Lewis Vulliamy (1780-1854) by Richard Cockle Lucas 1851
Model of a pendulum clock based on Galileo's design
Brass model of Galileo's pendulum escapement clock by Inkerman Rogers, London, 1921. Clockmakers' Museum No. 629
Flintlock pistol belonging to John Roger Arnold
20-bore flintlock pistol with gold-lined touch-hole and pan, signed 'I. Wilkins' and monogrammed with the initials JRA. Stamped with tower proof mark and fitted with a belt hook. English, c.1770 – 1780.
Orrery clock with a glass celestial globe
Table clock, driving an orrery contained within a glass celestial globe, unknown maker, France, c.1800. The clock movement is mounted on a triangular base, and surrounded by three bronze figures of Atlas. These hold up a glass celestial sphere engraved with the constellations. The dial consists of an enamel chapter ring, showing the movement through the centre. The movement has an anchor escapement and pendulum with silk suspension. This drives the orrery mechanism, which is contained within the glass globe. The mechanism shows the movement of the moon around the earth, and Mercury, Venus, Earth, Mars, Jupiter and Saturn around the sun. Purchased by the Worshipful Company of Clockmakers in 1879. Clockmakers' Museum No. 567.
Enamel watch depicting the Virgin and Child
Small enamelled watch by an unknown maker, Switzerland, c.1880. Engraved and enamelled gold case, numbered 10291. The back is enamelled with a scene of the Virgin Mary, Jesus as the Chirst Child and John the Baptist, within a gold rococo border and black surround. The scene is derived from the painting 'Madonna della Seggiola' c.1513 by Raphael. The front cover encloses a small offset silver dial with blued steel hands, surrounded by floral enamelling also on black ground. Bar-type movement with cylinder escapement. Clockmakers' Museum No. 1142.
Sinking bowl water clock
'Sinking bowl' water clock, formed of a copper bowl, in the base of which is a miniscule hole bushed with gold. Sri Lanka, unknown date. Clockmakers' Museum No. 646
Marine chronometer by John Arnold
Marine chronometer by John Arnold, London, c.1771. Octagonal mahogany box with a glazed base and glazed windows to the case sides, probably added in the 19th century. Silvered dial, now worn to brass, with subsidiary seconds, and signed on the dial 'John Arnold London No 1'. Two small ivory handles either side of the dial enable the movement to be lifted from the case. Fusee movement with spring detent escapement, two-arm compensation balance and sun and planet maintaining power. One-day duration. Purchased by the Worshipful Company of Clockmakers for its museum in 1885.
Watch with alarm by Robert Grinkin
Watch with alarm in a pierced gilt case by Robert Grinkin, London c.1610. Engraved gilt-metal oval shaped case, with armorial bearings and pierced and engraved side. Alarm bell fixed to the inside of the case-back. Engraved gilt-metal dial, with steel hand and alarm disc with pointer in the centre. Movement with verge escapement, alarm-work, barrow regulator, balance spring of 1½ turns, pinned-on balance cock and pierced barrel. Backplate with engraved border and signed 'Ro Grinkin'. The balance-spring and regulator were added probably in the late seventeenth century. Purchased by the Worshipful Company of Clockmakers for their museum in 1968.
Musical table clock by Thwaites for Barraud
Spring driven, musical table clock signed by Barraud, London and China c.1767. Ebonised and veneered wooden case with arched top and gilt-brass mounts. Engraved brass dial plate with applied circular white enamel dial. Gold hands. Fusee movement with verge escapement and balance wheel, which is mounted on the backplate. The clock plays four tunes on seven bells with nine hammers (two of the hammers are duplicated for repeated notes). It also strikes the hour on a large bell. Engraved backplate, signed ‘Barraud, London’ also engraved with Chinese characters. The movement is also stamped 'Thwaites 340'.
Gilt-metal and engraved silver verge watch by James Vaultrolier
Verge escapement watch by James Vautrolier. The oval gilt-metal case has profusely engraved silver covers and band. The engraved silver dial has a gilt hand. The movement has a three wheel train, pinned on balance cock and ratchet wheel set-up. The backplate has an engraved border. With original brass key and plain silver outer case. London c.1625
Silver astronomical watch by Nathaniel Barrow
Silver pair cased watch with astronomical indications. The matted dial plate is gilded and engraved with cherubs and has two applied silver dials. The lower dial, with blued steel hand, has a pierced centre and indicates the hours. The upper dial comprises a fixed silver ring showing the day of the month with a silver turning disc and pointer inside. The disc has five circles; the outer circle indicates the signs of the zodiac, the second the months, the third and fourth have a series of figures and the fifth shows the length of month. Also shown in separate apertures on the dial plate are indications for day of the week, moon phase and age, and high tides. Signed 'Nathan Barrow London'on the movement, but partially obscured by the balance cock and silver regulator. These appear to be later than the rest of the watch, which may have originally been made without a balance-spring. Verge escapement and three-wheel train.
Silver pair cased watch by Benjamin Wolverstone
Pair cased verge escapement watch by Benjamin Wolverstone, London, c.1670. Silver dial with gilt engraved border and silver hour ring. In the centre of the dial is a silver alarm disk with steel pointer; the centre of this is filled with red wax. Steel hand with long tail. Oval balance-cock without rim. Worm and wheel set-up regulator with openwork cover. Signed on the movement ‘Ben Woluerstone Londini’. Outer case covered in leather and studded with silver pins. Inner case made of pierced and engraved silver in a flower and foliage design.
30 hour longcase clock by Thomas Tompion
Longcase clock by Thomas Tompion, London, c.1670-1685. Ebonised pine case, with crested hood. The 10-inch square brass dial has engraved flowers with an alarm disc at the centre, a silvered chapter ring and angel spandrels in the corners. Pierced steel hour hand. Dial engraved 'Tho. Tompion, Londini, fecit' at 6 o'clock. The movement, which is numbered 151, is of 30-hour duration, and has (replacement) alarmwork and count wheel striking. The count wheel is on the outside of the movement.
Clock-watch by Daniel De St Leu
Gold pair cased clock-watch by Daniel De St. Leu, London, 1797. Gold outer case pierced and engraved with a trophy of arms and 5 crescents, gold inner case pierced and engraved. Hallmarked for 1797 and stamped with the casemakers mark IW. White enamel dial signed 'De St. Leu, London'. Gold hands with looped stems. Movement with verge escapement, ruby endstone. and hour striking on a bell, with a strike/silent lever. Engraved backplate signed 'Danl. De St. Leu. Watch Maker her Majesty London 3861'. Also with short double chain and cast and engraved key. This watch formed part of the collection of Sir David Salomons Bt, and was presented by Salomons to the museum of the Worshipful Company of Clockmakers in 1921.
Sundial by Elias Allen
A very high quality horizontal sundial, set out to show individual minutes and signed ‘Elias Allen fecit’. London, c.1630
Verge watch by Daniel Quare, in a polychrome enamel case signed 'Les Frères Huaud'
Watch by Daniel Quare c.1712, contained in a painted polychrome enamel case signed ‘Les Frères Huaud’ with a yellow enamel painted interior. Silver repoussé dial with a Huaud enamel plaque in centre. Dial winding at 3 o'clock. Steel hands. Verge escapement with broad-foot winged balance cock. Movement signed 'Quare, London'.
Deck-watch used by Capt. William Parry during his attempt to reach the North Pole, 1827
Silver spring detent escapement deck-watch in a mahogany case by Parkinson and Frodsham. White enamel dial with a subsiduary seconds dial and blued steel hands, signed 'Parkinson & Frodsham London 948' and the broad arrow mark. Flat spiral balance-spring with its stud on a flexible arm to aid the even coiling and uncoiling of the spring. Hallmarked for 1823 – 4.
Eight-day longcase clock by George Graham
Longcase clock by George Graham, London c.1750. Mahogany case with printed equation table within the trunk door. The 12 inch brass dial has a matted centre, four spandrels in each corner, a date aperture, an applied silvered chapter-ring, and a subsidiary seconds dial. Signed ‘Geo. Graham London’ at the base of the dial. The movement has a dead-beat escapement, bolt-and-shutter maintaining power, and a flat iron pendulum rod with heavy brass-cased bob. The case, movement and winding key are numbered ‘779’. Eight day duration.
Silver watch with alarm by Jeremy Gregory
Silver pair-cased watch with alarm by Jeremy Gregory, London, c.1670. Plain silver outer case, possibly of a later date. Inner case, pierced and engraved with flowers and foliage. Silver dial with engraved border and a raised hour circle, with an alarm disc and pointer in the centre. Single steel hour hand with long tail. Movement with verge escapement, a train of three wheels, and fusee with gutline for a chain.
Watch movement by Thomas Tompion
Watch movement by Thomas Tompion, London, c.1692. Movement with verge escapement, a train of four wheels and tulip pillars. Signed on the backplate ‘T. Tompion London 0598’. Presented to the museum of the Worshipful Company of Clockmakers by Benjamin Lewis Vulliamy in 1849.
Silver watch by Thomas Taylor
Silver pair cased watch by Thomas Taylor, with an outer leather case studded with silver. The inner case is engraved with the Lord Protector's crown and 16-58. Around this is engraved 'OLIVAR' 'TO JOHN MILTON' The gilt brass dial has a matted centre, a silvered chapter ring and a further silvered ring with the days of the month engraved around it. A steel pointer is attached to a gilt ring which rotates every 31 days, thereby indicating the day of the month. The time is indicated with a very short steel hand with tail of nearly equal length. The fusee movement has a three-wheel train, worm-and-wheel set-up regulator, with replaced wheel and verge escapement. The movement pillars are of an unusual design. Signed on the movement 'Thomas Taylor Holburne' London 1658. Formed part of the collection of the Reverend Henry Nelthropp, later donated by Nelthropp to the museum of Worshipful Company of Clockmakers.
Silver pair-cased watch by Benjamin Bell
Silver pair-cased watch by Benjamin Bell, London c. 1690. Silver case stamped 'SB'. Silver champleve dial with large subsidiary seconds dial. Steel tulip hands. Movement with verge escapement, steel balance-wheel with a spring of three turns and a train of four wheels. Signed on the movement 'Ben. Bell London'. Clockmakers' Museum No. 63
Watch movement with Stogten repeating work by Langley Bradley
Watch movement with verge escapement, Stogden repeating train and dust cap by Langley Bradley. Signed ‘L. Bradley London NRO’. Presented in 1819 to the Worshipful Company of Clockmakers for their museum by Benjamin Lewis Vulliamy.
Rock crystal and silver watch in the form of a tulip, by Sermand c.1640
Form watch by Sermand, France or Switzerland. c.1640. Silver case cast in the form of a tulip with three hinged petals, each petal having a carved rock crystal window. Engraved gilt dial plate with a large silver chapter ring, with floral engraving around the outside of the ring, and an engraved scene of a river, bridge and houses in the centre. Steel hour hand with long tail. Verge escapement, with steel two arm balance, Pinned-on, pierced and engraved, oval shaped balance cock. Three wheel train. Fusee with gut line. Gilt backplate signed ‘F. Sermand’.
German striking watch by an unknown maker
Clock-watch by an unknown maker, Germany, c.1580. Circular case made from gilt-brass which is pierced & chased. Later pendent. Silvered dial, with engraved centre and Roman numerals with touch pins. Steel hand. The movement has a striking train, the bell of which is fitted to the back of case. Verge escapement, with later balance cock, balance spring and escape wheel (c.1700). The wheels are made from steel, with the exception of the escape wheel, which is made of brass. No spring barrels. The watch originally contained a stackfreed, used to even out the power of the mainspring, now missing. Under the top plate are the very small letters A.L.Z.K. Originally part of the collection of the Reverend Henry Nelthropp, and donated by Nelthropp to the museum of Worshipful Company of Clockmakers in 1894.
Portrait of Francois Justin Vulliamy (1712 – 1797)
Oil on canvas portrait of Francois Justin Vulliamy (1712 – 1797).
Verge watch in Staffordshire enamelled case by Ann Phillips
Verge escapement watch with gilt-metal Staffordshire enamelled case by Ann Phillips White enamel dial with gold hands, and winding achieved through an aperture in the dial. Engraved and pierced balance cock, signed ‘Ann Phillips, London 1778’. c.1790
Quarter-repeating watch by Thomas Mudge
Gold and enamel pair-cased, quarter-repeating watch, by Thomas Mudge. The outer case has a blue enamel floral decoration against a gold ground, the inner is pierced and engraved. Movement with cylinder escapemen. Signed on the movement ‘Tho. Mudge London 220’.Signed on the dust cap 'Tho Mudge London'. Hallmarked for 1755.
Gold pair-cased watch with gold champleve dial, by Daniel Quare
Plain gold pair case, probably of a later date to the movement (c.1728) with case maker's stamp IR. Gold champlevé dial with aperture for dial winding. Blued steel hour hand and minute hand shaped to avoid protruding squares through dial. Verge escapement movement. Balance cock with solid engraved foot and diamond endstone. Signed on movement ‘Daniel Quare London 3720’. Clockmakers Museum No. 126
Early English verge watch by Michael Nouwen
An early English watch by Michael Nouwen in a finely pierced gilt-metal case. The dial has a blue enamel hour-circle and is engraved with foliage and rabbits. The hour hand is missing. The fusee movement has a four-wheel going train, verge escapement, a pinned on balance cock, (with a later repair), a steel balance, with timekeeping regulated via a worm-and-wheel set-up (with a later replaced wheel). The striking train is later. London c.1600. Originally part of the collection of the Reverend Henry Nelthropp, later donated by Nelthropp to the museum of Worshipful Company of Clockmakers.
Oval verge watch signed G Petit
Oval verge escapement watch by William Petit. Engraved gilt-brass case with an engraved silver band and winding hole with shutter. Gilt-brass dial plate with applied engraved silver dial. Movement with pinned on balance cock, signed 'G Petit Fecit'. London, c.1630.
Silver watch with '6-hour dial' by William Bartram
Silver pair cased watch with '6-hour dial' by William Bartram, London c.1680. The inner silver case is engraved ‘J. Smith’ and the outer ‘J.S.’ This may refer to the original owner. Silver champlevé dial with steel hour hand and outer calendar ring. Movement with verge escapement and signed ‘Will Bertram, London’ on the backplate.
Spring-detent escapement watch in a gold case by Reid & Co. London
Spring detent escapement watch in a gold case by Reid & Co., London with attached chain and winding key with semi-precious stones. Case hallmarked for 1807-8 and stamped with casemaker's mark 'LC'. White enamel dial with a subsidiary seconds dial, and blued steel loop hands. Diamond endstone. Spring detent escapement with helical spring and compensation balance. Signed ‘Reid and Co. London 1808’.
Gold lever watch by George Blackie
Lever escapement watch by George Blackie in a gold engine-turned case. White enamel dial with a subsidiary seconds dial and up-and-down indicator. Helical balance-spring. Signed ‘Geoe. Blackie fecit 392, Strand, London No. 742’. Engraved on the back plate ‘Nelthropp prize winner 1873’. Hallmarked for 1873.
Eight-day longcase clock by Edward East in a later marquetry case
Anchor escapement, eight-day, striking longcase by Edward East London. The oak case, veneered in walnut and floral marquetry, has been altered to fit the movement, which is earlier. The 9¼-inch brass dial has a narrow silvered hour circle with minute figures at every 5, engraved spandrels, and is signed 'Edwardus East Londini'. The two-train movement has count-wheel striking and bolt-and-shutter maintaining power. The movement dates to around 1675 and the case c.1685.
Quarter-repeating watch by George Graham
Gold pair cased watch, with quarter-repeating on bell, by George Graham. Gold inner case with pierced and engraved edges, wilth bell screwed to the inside. Outer case covered with leather and studded with gold. White enamel dial with steel beetle hands. Signed dust cap, scratched on the inside with the number 883. Movement with repeating mechanism, cylinder escapement, and pierced and engraved balance cock with diamond endstone. Signed ‘Geo. Graham London 883’, hallmarked for 1745 – 6
Lantern clock by Peter Closon
Small weight-driven 30 hour lantern or 'house' clock with alarmwork by Peter Closon. The clock originally had a verge and balance-wheel escapement but was converted at some point to anchor and long pendulum. It would have had a twelve-hour duration. The dial is engraved with tulips with a steel hand, and is signed 'Peter Closon Neere Holburn Londini fecit'. c.1655
Watch with '15 minute' hand by Richard Street
Silver pair-cased watch by Richard Street, London, c. 1700. Silver case with an equation of time scale engraved on the back, having an outer circle of months and an inner circle of minutes. On the inside is stamped '408'. Open cover to case and an inner bezel with glass. Silver champleve dial with winding aperture. The minute ring is numbered 1-15, with the minute hand going round in fifteen minutes. Each minute has six divisions of 10 seconds each. Movement of very high quality with reversed fusee. The regulator is by worm and rack. Signed on the movement 'Richard Street London 408'. The watch formed part of the collection of the Rev. Henry Nelthropp. Clockmakers' Museum No. 102.
Spring-detent escapement watch with gold case by John Barwise
Gold spring-detent escapement watch by John Barwise. Gold case stamped VW (for casemaker Valentine Walker) and hallmarked for 1799 – 1800. White enamel dial signed Barwise, London, 158'. Subsidiary dials for hours, minutes and up-and-down indicator, all with gold hands, and a seconds dial with blued steel hand. Spring detent escapement; a lightened version of Earnshaw’s arrangement. Solid 3-armed brass balance with two bi-metallic arms fixed to it. Jewelled pivot holes and diamond endstone. Signed on movement ‘Barwise, London, No. 158’.
Silver clock-watch by Henricus Mott
Silver pair-cased clock-watch by Henricus Mott. Outer case covered in leather and studded in silver with a vine pattern and flowers, the inner pierced and engraved with flowers and a pastoral scene. The silver dial is engraved with a classical military figure, in an interior with books and a lute, perhaps theatrical. The movement has a three wheel going train, verge escapement, worm and wheel set up and screwed on balance cock. Signed ‘Henricus Mott in Drury Lane’. London, c.1640. Clockmakers Museum No. 713
Form watch by Benjamin Hill
Form watch by Benjamin Hill, London, c.1650. Silver case cast in the style of a pomegranate. Silver dial with engraved hour circle and sunk matt centre engraved with a flower to the centre. Steel hour hand with long tail. Movement with verge escapement, train of three wheels, worm and wheel set-up regulator with silver dial and steel tracery, and long oval screwed-on balance cock. Signed on the backplate 'Benjamin Hill Londini'. Clockmakers' Museum No. 28.
Watch with mock pendulum by David Lestourgeon
Silver pair-cased watch by David Lestourgeon, London c.1700. Plain silver inner and outer cases. Silver dial with eccentric hour ring and slot below showing a 'mock pendulum' or bob on the balance. There is a regulator dial on each side of the bob aperture, and Lestourgeon' signed below the aperture. Steel beetle hands. Engraved gilt-plate over the backplate with a central repousse bust of William III. Movement with verge escapement. Signed 'Lestourgeon London' on backplate. Clockmakers' Museum No. 112
Marine Timekeeper known as 'H5' by John Harrison and Son 1770
Silver pair-cased marine timekeeper, known as H5, by John Harrison & Son, London. White enamel dial with gold central star to adjust hands. Verge escapement with Harrison’s special diamond pallets. Steel balance and spring. Fusee. Maintaining power. 7 1/2 seconds remontoir on 4th wheel. All wheels from the 3rd, jewelled. Long bimetallic strip on adjustable frame. Original key and starting pin. Signed ‘John Harrison & Son London 1770 No. 2’. Case hallmarked for 1768 – 9 and stamped ‘HT’ (probably Henry Taylor who became a free Clockmaker in 1746). With original mahogany carrying case and three silk cushions.