A lovely original example of a Welsh 8-day oak longcase clock by the esteemed maker John Owens of Llanrwst.
Extensive research has been carried out into the life and Works of the Owen clock-making dynasty in Llanrwst, by Colin & Mary Brown. In their excellent book, THE CLOCKMAKERS OF LLANRWST, they establish that the first Llanrwst clock was produced by John Owen, in about 1745. John and his son, Watkin were prolific makers of quality clocks, and his other sons also produced a number. Virtually all of John’s clocks were 8-day long case clocks. He died aged 57 years, in 1776.
Using information from this book, there are various identifying features that tell us that this clock dates specifically from the period 1770-76.
The flat-top case has clearly always been so, although about half of John Owen’s later work had cases with architectural pediments. It is a fine oak case, having several quality features;
crossbanded borders to the hood door, trunk door and plinth,
reeded quarter pilasters on the trunk match the reeded hood pillars,
brass capitals and bases on the hood pillars.
Hitherto, Owen had used steel components within the movement for the rack, lifting-piece and hook, but after 1770 all components, even down to the canon bridge screws, were made of brass, a more expensive material to use.
The clock strikes the hours on a bell.
The engraved 12-inch dial is very nicely engraved by the better of Jones’s engravers, in a style that has been labelled the Exotic Plants series by Colin & Mary Brown. These dials were individuals, but shared certain characteristics – the bright-finished dial centre having flora & fauna patterns, a date aperture with a chisel-edge box, and the recessed date dial has an engraved ring border.
The movement is to be overhauled and guaranteed for 3 years.