Daniel Quare (c.1647/8-1724) was born in Somerset. A highly esteemed watchmaker, Quare was admitted to the Clockmakers’ Company in 1671, later becoming Master in 1708. Quare established himself as an important horological innovator by inventing a type of repeating work around 1680. Whilst Quare was developing his repeating mechanism, his rival, the Revd. Edward Barlow, was developing his own version. Barlow had invented the rack form of striking in 1676 and, in 1685, Thomas Tompion made a watch for Barlow that incorporated the latter’s repeating system. Three years later, in 1688, Daniel Quare and Edward Barlow presented their different forms of repeating watches to King James II in order that he might declare which he regarded the superior. The King favoured Quare’s form, noting that Barlow’s required two pushers, one for the hour strike and one for the quarters, whilst Quare’s single push-piece activated both the hours and quarters.
As a Quaker, Quare was unable to be appointed Royal Clockmaker, however, as Cedric Jagger notes in his book Royal Clocks, Quare “was given free access via the Back Stairs.” Indeed, Quare was well connected both at home and abroad, a fact borne out by the impressive wedding guest lists of his daughters Anne and Elizabeth, which boasted noble families and envoys from around Europe. In 1718 Quare went into partnership with Stephen Horseman, after which their work was signed ‘Quare & Horseman’. Daniel Quare is buried at the Quakers’ cemetery at Bunhill Fields, Finsbury.
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