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HENRY MASSY. A fine and rare William III period tortoiseshell and silver mounted quarter-repeating bracket clock.

HENRY MASSY.  A fine and rare William III period tortoiseshell and silver mounted quarter-repeating bracket clock. HENRY MASSY.  A fine and rare William III period tortoiseshell and silver mounted quarter-repeating bracket clock. HENRY MASSY.  A fine and rare William III period tortoiseshell and silver mounted quarter-repeating bracket clock. HENRY MASSY.  A fine and rare William III period tortoiseshell and silver mounted quarter-repeating bracket clock.
HW6441-2404-Henry-Massey.jpg

HENRY MASSY. A fine and rare William III period tortoiseshell and silver mounted quarter-repeating bracket clock.

Origin
LONDON
Date
circa 1700

A fine and rare William III period tortoiseshell and silver mounted quarter-repeating bracket clock of 8-day duration.

The 7-inch square brass dial is mounted with winged cherub head corner spandrels and a silvered chapter ring. The centre is finely matted and there is engraving around the apertures to view the day of the month and the dummy pendulum. The maker’s signature Henry Massy London is engraved on the plate behind the dummy pendulum.

The high quality twin fusee 8-day duration movement has a restored verge escapement, hour strike with strike/silent and pull quarter-repeat mechanism, the quarters being sounded on five bells and the hours on a separate bell. The particularly finely engraved backplate of the movement has a wheatear border and exquisite flower, foliate and bird engraving. At the top there is a very elaborate fretted and engraved heart-shaped backcock for the verge arbor.

The elegant dome top case is veneered with red tortoiseshell and has silver escutcheons, a knopped solid silver carrying handle and beautifully engraved and pierced silver sound frets to the front and each side.

Height: 13 ⅜ in (34 cm) excluding handle

Width: 10 ½ in (26.5 cm)

Depth: 6 ½ in (16.5 cm)

* Henry Mass(e)y was born circa 1664, the son of Nicholas Massey. He was made a Free Brother of the Clockmakers’ Company in 1692 and in 1695 he admitted to having two “alien” apprentices. In 1697 he signed the Clockmakers’ Company oath of allegiance. He died in 1720. His clocks are signed variously ‘Henry Massey, London, ‘Mr Massy London, ‘Hen. Massy London’ and ‘H. Massey’.

Tortoiseshell veneered table clocks were made for a very short period in the last quarter of the 17th century and it is rare to find one in such pristine condition.

References: Brian Loomes, Clockmakers of Britain: 1286 - 1700, p. 516

                      Brian Loomes, Watchmakers and Clockmakers of the World, pp.338-339

                      Dawson, Drover, Parkes, Early English Clocks, p.455, pl.666

                      Cecinsky and Webster, English Domestic Clocks, pp.273-279, fig.290          

HW6441

 
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