12
12
Thomas Tompion, London
AN EXCEPTIONALLY RARE SILVER VERGE ALARM WATCH CIRCA 1698, NO. 95
Estimate
20,00030,000
JUMP TO LOT
12
Thomas Tompion, London
AN EXCEPTIONALLY RARE SILVER VERGE ALARM WATCH CIRCA 1698, NO. 95
Estimate
20,00030,000
JUMP TO LOT

Details & Cataloguing

Celebration of the English Watch, Part III, The Genius of Thomas Tompion

|
London

Thomas Tompion, London
AN EXCEPTIONALLY RARE SILVER VERGE ALARM WATCH CIRCA 1698, NO. 95
Movement:gilded full plate, verge escapement, decoratively pierced and engraved balance cock, steel three-arm balance with spring, stop work for alarm visible to the backplate, decoratively pierced and engraved alarm barrel, striking on a bell to the inside case back, fusee and chain, tulip pillars, signed and numbered Tho. Tompion, London, 95
Dial: silver champlevé dial, Roman numerals with half hour divisions between and to the ring beneath, outer Arabic minute ring, blued steel poker minute hand and double ended tulip hour hand, the tail for alarm indication upon central alarm disc, outer gilded ring, winding for alarm between 7 and 8 o'clock and for going at 3 o'clock
• Case: silver case, the band with engraved decoration of scrolling foliage inhabited by birds and pierced for sound emission, engraved townscape beneath the pendant, a grotesque mask to the base, split bezel for glass retention, plain back, stirrup bow, maker's mark WA incuse probably for William Achurch, lacking outer case  
diameter 48 mm
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Provenance

Antiquorum Geneva, 23rd October 1999, lot 512

Literature

Jeremy Evans, Thomas Tompion at the Dial and Three Crowns, 2006, p. 102
Jeremy Evans, Jonathan Carter & Ben Wright, Thomas Tompion 300 Years, 2013, p. 285

Catalogue Note

Alarm watches are the rarest type of watch made by Tompion. Research conducted by Jeremy Evans suggests that fewer than 10 alarm watches by Tompion are known to have survived and, in the book Thomas Tompion 300 Years, the authors note that the present watch “is one of the best preserved of them” [see cit. p.285]. Unusually for an English watch of the period, the watch has winding squares for both the going and alarm trains through the champlevé dial. The advantage of this design over the normal arrangement is that, for a movement of modest size, the need to allow space in the back plate for an alarm square is overcome and so, rather than a small two-arm balance, a large three-arm balance could be fitted.

Celebration of the English Watch, Part III, The Genius of Thomas Tompion

|
London