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Fine English ormolu table clock by Robert Philp, London. Made for the Chinese market. Circa 1780.

An important and rare, quarter striking 'Scroll Angle' clock made for the Chinese market by the celebrated maker Robert Philp of London.

Stock No:   14283

The clock is of eight day duration, double fusee with rear wound movement and verge escapement. It
strikes the hours on a bell and sounds the quarters on a further two bells. It has five knopped pillars and is numbered throughout with the numeral 7. The backplate has floral Rococo engraving with the lower portion signed "Rob't Philp, London" in script and within a cartouche. The movement has automatic strike silencing during the hours of darkness which is a feature I have never seen before on such an early clock. The feature may even be unique.

Behind a 4" x 6"arched dial plate are three white enamel dials held in position by an engraved ormolu mask while the main dial has blue Roman numerals, black minute ring and outer Arabic fives. The upper left subsidiary dial shows the age of the moon and the right subsidiary dial shows the calendar age. The arch contains a three dimensional phases of the moon sphere with a sight ring which is operated by complicated under-dial wheels. The mask engraving is of geometrical design with matching brass hands framed within a heavily cast and ornate, hinged, glazed, ormolu bezel.

The clock is contained in a well proportioned and finely cast ormolu case of classical design with curved pagoda roof carrying a flaming urn with ornate decoration surmounting a stepped square base. The roof is ribbed with overlaid Acanthus leaf infill edged with pierced Egyptian dwarf railing. The square section trunk has full length Egyptian papyrus scrolls as caryatids to the corners while the sides and rear doors have Moroccan style pierced sound frets with silk backing. These have concave corners to the border allowing the placing of four roundels. The plinth moulding is draped with further Acanthus leaves above a pierced Moroccan fret standing upon four splayed Acanthus feet.

The importance of this clock cannot be stressed too highly. Robert Philp was a very fine maker, commissioned to make clocks for the very wealthy Chinese market. An almost identical clock was in the Royal collection of the Imperial Palace at Peking while a further example was sold at Sotheby's on the 10th of June 2013 for £73,000. Apparently, all of the clocks have identical movements. Fortunately, this clock has survived in original form with the original fire gilding to the case. It is also interesting that themes from North Africa and the Mediterranean were used to satisfy the Chinese lust to explore the styles of other cultures.

Dimensions:                 15 1/2" high x 7" wide x 7" deep.

Circa:                            1780.

Condition:                      Excellent and original.

Price:                             £53,000.00.

Fine English ormolu table clock by Robert Philp, London. Made for the Chinese market. Circa 1780.
  • Fine English ormolu table clock by Robert Philp, London. Made for the Chinese market. Circa 1780.
  • Fine English ormolu table clock by Robert Philp, London. Made for the Chinese market. Circa 1780.
  • Fine English ormolu table clock by Robert Philp, London. Made for the Chinese market. Circa 1780.
  • Fine English ormolu table clock by Robert Philp, London. Made for the Chinese market. Circa 1780.
  • Fine English ormolu table clock by Robert Philp, London. Made for the Chinese market. Circa 1780.
  • Fine English ormolu table clock by Robert Philp, London. Made for the Chinese market. Circa 1780.
  • Fine English ormolu table clock by Robert Philp, London. Made for the Chinese market. Circa 1780.
  • Fine English ormolu table clock by Robert Philp, London. Made for the Chinese market. Circa 1780.
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