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Louis XVI Enamel-mounted Ormolu and Marble Quarter-chiming Skeleton Clock with Calendar

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Clocks, Watches & Scientific Instruments - 2946M
Date / Time :
October 28, 2016 10:00AM


Louis XVI Enamel-mounted Ormolu and Marble Quarter-chiming Skeleton Clock with Calendar, Jacques Joseph Castagnet, clockmaker, and George Adrien Merlet, enameler, Paris, c. 1790, the step variegated rouge marble base on four bun feet supports a blue and gilt star enameled arch with beaded ormolu at the front and a corresponding brass arch at the back on four short ormolu cast and engraved columns, the white enameled dial signed at the base by the enameler, GM and within the roman numeral chapter ring Castagnet a Paris, pierced and gilt hour and minute hands, day-of-the-week hand with corresponding sign of the zodiac, day-of-the-month, center seconds and moon's age in the arch, eight-day, three-train, quarter-chiming movement on three nested bells, deadbeat pinwheel escapement, regulated by a seven-rod temperature-compensating pendulum with beat adjustment and knife-edge suspension, ht. 19 1/2 in.

Note: The Parisian clockmaker Jacques-Joseph Castagnet (1729/30-1803/04) became a guild master in 1776. He is listed as working from Rue St. Martin and was appointed a depute of his guild 1779-1783 and a syndic in 1786. Few clocks carry his name but those that do are always of exceptional quality.

The enameler Georges-Adrien Merlet (1754-1812) apprenticed under Berbezet and worked with some of the great craftsmen including LePaute, Bertoud, and Folin, as well as enameling clocks under his own name. The main dial carries the initials "GM" along the bottom edge, while other enameled parts carry the initials on the reverse sides.

Related examples can be found in La Pendule Francais, p. 315; Antiquarian Horology, March 2016, p. 27; and the Getty Museum Collection:
Estimate $30,000-35,000

The absence of a condition statement does not imply that the lot is in perfect condition or completely free from wear and tear, imperfections or the effects of aging. Condition requests can be obtained via email (lot inquiry button) or by telephone to the appropriate gallery location (Boston/617.350.5400 or Marlborough/508.970.3000). Any condition statement given, as a courtesy to a client, is only an opinion and should not be treated as a statement of fact. Skinner Inc. shall have no responsibility for any error or omission.


Georges-Adrien Merlet, Jacques-Joseph Castagnet, George Adrien Merlet, Jacques Joseph Castagnet, Paris, Clocks, Gilding, Gold, Learning, Metal plating, Ormolu, Porcelain, Visual arts