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Cartel Clock

Cartel Clock

  • Place of origin:

    Paris (made)

  • Date:

    1745-1750 (made)

  • Artist/Maker:

    Stollewerck, Michel (clockmaker)

  • Materials and Techniques:

    Ormolu case retaining its original 18th century surface chasing. The side fret panels are later replacements. The dial and movement are contemporary but the back plate has been cut down to fit into the case. The dial plate has a greenish tinge to the edge characteristic of 18th century enamelling. Above the dial glass a small hole remains for the adjustment lever to raise or lower the pendulum so that the running speed could be speeded up or slowed down. The glass plate in the back is a later replacement as the back would originally have been entirely of metal. Originally lined with red silk to let out sound.

  • Credit Line:

    Bequeathed by John Jones

  • Museum number:

    997-1882

  • Gallery location:

    Europe 1600-1815, Room 2a, case CA2

This cartel clock was originally supported by a matching bracket. The maker of the movement Michel Stollenwerck was of German birth but recorded in Paris by 1730. He first established his workshop in the precincts of the Abbey St Germain des Pres in 1739 but moved to the rue de la Comedie Française by 1747. Stollenwerck had exceptional mechanical talent and specialized in musical clocks. In 1776 Pere Marie-Dominique-Joseph Engramelle noted 'The carillons of Stollenwerck which have been transported to China, to the Grand Mogul, to Turkey, and to the Hurons, have enchanted the sovereigns of these vast countries'. The editors of the Encyclopedie chose one of Stollenwerck's clocks to illustrate the article on Carillon.

Stollenwerck's movements were contained in cases by the best workers in ormolu including J.P.Latz, R.Osmond, Morlay and E.Roy. They were gilded by I.P.Gobert. This example, although relatively modest, incorporates, as finial a Cupid armed with fleche of arrows, his bow slung behind him. The presence of Cupid representing Love alludes to the celebrated clock model by André Charles Boulle in which Cupid is shown as the Conqueror of Time.

Stollenwerck supplied clocks for the French nobility and the crowned heads of Europe including King Stanislas Leszczynski, Frederick II of Prussia and Augustus III of Saxony.

Physical description

Case: This cartel clock was originally supported on an ormolu bracket.

Dial: White enamel dial, 8.9cm (diameter), of conventional layout. Winding hole piercing and signed in centre 'Stollewerk Paris'. There are gilt hands, the hour-hand being pierced, and there is another hole for regulation above the dial top.

Movement: Going train with barrel at the bottom centre of the movement, the fusee of 9 turns to the right. Verge escapement, with crown wheel of 35T, crutch attachd to the verge. The pendulum is 13.6cm long, suspended from a wound-up cord, with a lenticular bob, 4.1cm diameter. The locking-plate striking mechanism to left, with giong barrel. An external count-wheel is numbered 1 to 12 with a second wheel of train, allowing a sngle stroke at half ours.

Place of Origin

Paris (made)

Date

1745-1750 (made)

Artist/maker

Stollewerck, Michel (clockmaker)

Materials and Techniques

Ormolu case retaining its original 18th century surface chasing. The side fret panels are later replacements. The dial and movement are contemporary but the back plate has been cut down to fit into the case. The dial plate has a greenish tinge to the edge characteristic of 18th century enamelling. Above the dial glass a small hole remains for the adjustment lever to raise or lower the pendulum so that the running speed could be speeded up or slowed down. The glass plate in the back is a later replacement as the back would originally have been entirely of metal. Originally lined with red silk to let out sound.

Marks and inscriptions

The movement is inscribed 'MStollewerck' and the dial bears the name 'Stollewerck a Paris'
Michel Stollewerk became a Master Clockmaker in Paris in 1746 and died in 1768. BY 1747 he was working in the Rue de la Comedie Francaise in the French metropolis.

Dimensions

Height: 30.5 cm Base of feet to top of figure on top of clock, Width: 20 cm Across feet at base Approximate maximum value, Depth: 11 cm From front of clock across to back, including handle on door at back, Weight: 4 kg plus ? kg Estimated

Object history note

The clock features in an engraved view of John Jones's Dining Room at 95 Piccadilly, London. The side panels are thought to be later replacements. This clock was among a large collection of furniture, porcelain, metalwork, paintings and books owned by the tailor and businessman John Jones, and kept in cramped conditions at his Piccadilly house. In his will of 4 December 1879 and in a codicil of 22 January 1880, Jones bequeathed the objects to the South Kensington Museum, and they were transferred there after his death in 1882. The Handbook to the Jones bequest, published in 1883, marvels at the value of the gift, which seems still not to have been displayed to best advantage: 'Probably a large majority of those who visit the Jones collection will be indisposed to believe ... that so limited a space as three not large galleries in the Museum can contain furniture and decorative arts worth no less than a quarter of a million of money'. Jones' principal collecting interests lay in French eighteenth-century furniture and decorative arts, of which this clock is an example, as well as reflecting the late-Victorian love of rich, gilded surfaces and historical artistic styles. Acquired by John Jones before 1882; it is one of sixteen clocks he bequeathed to this museum.

Descriptive line

An ormolu cartel clock

Bibliographic References (Citation, Note/Abstract, NAL no)

Messrs. FOSTER, Inventory of the Collection of Pictures, Miniatures, Decorative Furniture, Porcelain, Objects of Art, Books formed by the late John Jones, Esq of No 95 Piccadilly And bequeathed by him to the Trustees of the South Kensington Museum for the benefit of the Nation, p.25 no.354; Catalogue of the Jones Collection Part II, 1924, p.65
Catalogue of the Jones Collection Part II, 1924

Labels and date

CLOCK
FRENCH (Paris); about 1750.
The dial signed "Stollewerck a Paris."
Case of chased ormolu.
Michel Stollewerck was made maître-horloger on the 15th April, 1746, and worked in Paris, often collaborating with A. Fortier.
Jones Collection.
Museum No. 997-1882 [1980-1990]

Materials

Ormolu; Enamel

Techniques

Technique; Technique; Casting; Chasing; Enamelling

Categories

Bronze; Clocks & Watches; Metalwork

Collection

Metalwork Collection

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