Object Description

An exceptional George II architectural mahogany longcase clock in the manner of William Kent. The case constructed in a rich Cuban mahogany with outstanding carved detail. Rising from a breakfront plinth and carved with a stiff leaf band, the inspection door, of truncated inverted triangulated form is released by a spring catch situated to the rear of the case. The entrelac and leaf carved hood has a scrolled broken swan neck pediment, with a central carved bust of Chronos, and encloses a brass faced arched dial, driven by an eight day, three train quarter hour striking movement, the quarters being struck on 6 bells, and the hours on a separate bell, with figural spandrels of the Four Seasons to the angles, and showing subsidiary dials with moon phases, seconds and a date aperture. The silvered chapter ring has the seconds in Arabic, and the hours in Roman numerals, indicated by blued steel hands, flanked by spandrels of Mercury and Pan.

Dial signed by the maker, ‘Henry Harrison London’.

One other longcase clock with a Kentian architectural case similar to ours is known to exist in a private collection. This other clock was the property of William Hogarth, Sergeant Painter to the King, satirist, and engraver. Hogarth’s Chiswick home was adjacent to Lord Burlington’s Chiswick House, which was designed by Kent. Hogarth and Kent were certain to have met there. R.W. Symonds attributed this clock to William Hallett in his 1938 publication, English Furniture from Charles II to George II.

Object History

Anthony Woodburn, Sussex
Hotspur Ltd., London
Private Collection, USA

Object Literature

Comparative Literature
R. W Symonds, English Furniture from Charles II to George II, London, 1938, figs. 232, 237.
Furniture History Society, ‘A re-appraisal of William Hallett,’ Yearbook, 2012.
Hotspur, Eighty Years of Antique Dealing, pp 260-61.
Antiquarian Horology, Vol. 1, December 1953-1956.
B. Loomes Watchmakers and Clockmakers of the World NAG Press 2006
R. W. Symonds, The Connoisseur, April 1938, pp 83-89.
William Kent: Designing Georgian Britain Yale, 2014.

Object Classification

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