JOHANNES KNIBB, Oxoniae fecit, c1685
A fine small spring driven striking table clock by the eminent maker John Knibb. The 6.5 inch square brass dial is mounted with a silvered chapter ring and wing and cherub spandrels to the four corners. The centre is finely matted with elegant pierced and faceted pointers and the dial plate is signed by the maker beneath the chapter ring.
The fully restored verge movement runs for 8 days and strikes the hours on a bell. There is also a pull repeat for sounding the hours and quarters on two separate bells. The backplate is beautifully engraved with scrolling foliage and tulips and is signed ‘Johannes Knibb Oxoniae Fecit’ in an arc.
The elegant ebony veneered case stands only 12 inches high and is of typical Knibb form. It is surmounted by a knopped and scrolling carrying handle to the top and has a fine gilt brass inset foliate fret with a cherub’s head in the central frieze. To each side of the front door there are also the typical ‘Knibb’ elongated scroll escutcheons.
Height: 12 in (excluding handle)
Width: 9 ½ in
Depth: 5.75 in
Small ebony veneered bracket clocks by either Joseph or John Knibb are extremely rare and hard to find. The delicacy of their movements and the finesse of their case design make them amongst the most desirable of any ‘Golden Age’ clocks for the serious horological collector. John Knibb was a member of the eminent Knibb family. He was born in 1650, a brother of Joseph, for whom he worked from about 1664. He was free of the Clockmakers’ Company in 1673 and continued to work in Oxford after Joseph had moved to London. He had a varied clientele and his finest work was equal to that of his brother. He became Mayor of Oxford in 1700.
For an almost identical bracket clock by John Knibb, see plate 86 on page 89 of author Ronald Lee’s “The Knibb Family of Clockmakers”.