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Barometer

Barometer

  • Place of origin:

    France (made)

  • Date:

    1770-1790 (made)

  • Artist/Maker:

    Unknown

  • Materials and Techniques:

    Gilt wood mounted with ceramic plaques and metal fittings

  • Museum number:

    184-1892

  • Gallery location:

    In Storage

Barometers predict the weather by measuring the way that mercury reacts to atmospheric pressure. In this example the glass tube containing mercury is now missing, but the terms Pluie (rain) and Beau (fine) on the ceramic face indicate how the barometer was to be read. The carved swags of flowers around the top of the frame have also been damaged.

The face of this barometer bears the words Selon Toricelly, meaning according to the method of Toricelly. This refers to Evangelista Torricelli (1608-1647) who invented the barometer in 1643. At the top of the barometer is a Wedgwood jasper ware ceramic plaque depicting a woman holding a child, within a wreath of flowers. This plaque design is known as 'Domestic Employment' and was designed by Lady Templeton for Josiah Wedgwood. In the last two decaded of the eighteenth century, Wedgwood plaques were much admired in France.

Physical description

Barometer with ceramic face in carved gilt wood frame with laurel swags below and surmounted by swags and a wreath of flowers surrounding a ceramic placque depicting a mother and child in white on a blue ground.

Place of Origin

France (made)

Date

1770-1790 (made)

Artist/maker

Unknown

Materials and Techniques

Gilt wood mounted with ceramic plaques and metal fittings

Dimensions

Length: 32 cm, Width: 13 cm

Descriptive line

Barometer with carved, giltwood frame, set with a Wedgwood plaque. French, ca. 1770-1790

Materials

Wood; Ceramic

Techniques

Gilding; Hand carving; Painting (image-making)

Collection

Furniture and Woodwork Collection

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