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17th Century english longcase clock for sale. Made by Jeremiah Johnson of exchange alley, london. Circa 1690 (MDCXC).

A very rare and museum category, thirty hour duration, ebonised longcase clock.

Stock No:   14119

The thirty hour duration, rope driven movement with Anchor Recoil escapement, finned pillars, countwheel striking the hours on a large bell and motion work to carry two hands.

Behind an eleven inch square brass dial with matted centre, elaborate 'winged cherub' spandrels and silvered chapter ring. The chapter having Roman numerals, an inner quarter-hour ring, outer minute ring and perimeter Arabic fives. Also, ornate 'cruciform' half hour markings and the lower area and flanking the VI bearing the maker's signature "Jere(miah) Johnson in Exchange Alley (London)". The original pierced steel hands being finely executed.

Contained in an ebonised pine (Deal) case. The rising hood having a large moulded flat top, blind fret frieze to the front, further moulding and the glazed front flanked by opposing barley-twist pillars with 'cotton reel' ends. The hood sides also having framed glass panels and the boarded rear returns carry conforming quartered barley-twist pillars. The lower moulding sits upon a convex throat and the full-length trunk door has half-round edge moulding and a bullseye circular glass lenticle with a conforming bezel. The plain base has an elaborated top moulding and sits upon four squashed bun feet.

There are various aspects of this clock that reflect the influence of the Fromanteel family such as six chapter ring feet to ensure that close contact with the dialplate could always be relied upon also, the proportions of the movement plates.

* Jeremiah Johnson was born in 1646 and entered into an apprenticeship in 1660. He had three masters the final one being Ahasuerus Fromanteel II. He was in the Clockmakers Company 1668-97 and died in 1709. He lived in St. Margarets, Lothbury. Johnson is in my opinion, a greatly understated maker and produced work comparable in quality to Joseph Knibb; this example is one of his more functional clocks however, the quality is easily seen.

** The rarity of this clock is due to it still having its original pine case in such complete and good condition. Pine furniture especially clock cases do not usually last for 325 years because of damp, mould, woodworm and general breakages. The fact that a mere thirty hour duration clock case has been preserved for such a long time makes this example very rare. It is a fascinating example made during the reign of William and Mary. I am extremely reluctant to restore the dial and case and feel that they must be preserved. 'Change' or 'Exchange' Alley still exists. It is an alleyway connecting shops and coffee houses and a short cut between Cornhill and Lombard Street. It is a very important location historically as Jonathan's Coffee House was used as a trading place for shares and commodities at the time this clock was made in that same area and was the pre-cursor of the London Stock Exchange. Furthermore, Lloyds of London was also started in the Alley at around the same time.

*** This clock was almost certainly made for the downstairs servant's quarters of an important house; the style and proportions of the case mimic those of a much grander clock of eight day duration and in a walnut marquetry case. Also, usually at this period in history, thirty hour clocks only had an hour hand that was accurate to within a few minutes however, having hour and minute hands allowed the time to be read to within seconds - this clock was required to be used accurately and synchronisation with an upstairs clock would have been a simple matter. Being thirty hour with Huygens endless cord winding also meant that the time would not be affected during winding which was a simple matter of pulling on a rope.

Dimensions:                                   76 1/2" high x 17 3/4" wide x 9 1/2" deep.

Circa:                                             1690.

Condition:                                       Museum condition and original.

Price:                                              £9,750.00.

Investment forecast:                       6 to 10 (please refer to our 'Buying for Investment' page for explanation).

Early English Longcase clock by Jeremiah Johnson, Exchange Alley, London. C1690.
  • Early English Longcase clock by Jeremiah Johnson, Exchange Alley, London. C1690.
  • Early English Longcase clock by Jeremiah Johnson, Exchange Alley, London. C1690.
  • Early English Longcase clock by Jeremiah Johnson, Exchange Alley, London. C1690.
  • Early English Longcase clock by Jeremiah Johnson, Exchange Alley, London. C1690.
  • Early English Longcase clock by Jeremiah Johnson, Exchange Alley, London. C1690.
  • Early English Longcase clock by Jeremiah Johnson, Exchange Alley, London. C1690.
  • Early English Longcase clock by Jeremiah Johnson, Exchange Alley, London. C1690.
  • Early English Longcase clock by Jeremiah Johnson, Exchange Alley, London. C1690.
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