William Clement, London
William Clement, London
William Clement, London

William Clement, London

c. 1695 to c. 1700 England

Offered by Howard Walwyn Ltd Fine Antique Clocks

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A fine William & Mary period 8-Day longcase clock by this important maker. The case is constructed primarily of oak and veneered with walnut and panels of bird and floral marquetry against an ebony ground. The cross-grain mouldings are in walnut. Standing on bun feet the clock retains its original base and there is a lenticle to the trunk door. The hood with front opening door is flanked by ebonised barley twist columns and there is a delicate walnut sound fret set below the cornice.

The 11 inch square brass dial is mounted with cherub and foliate spandrels, silvered chapter ring and subsidiary seconds ring. The dial centre is finely matted and has an aperture to view the day of the month. The dial plate has delicate foliate engraving between the spandrels and is signed at the bottom by the maker between VII and V. The blued steel hands are finely pierced and faceted.

The exceptional high quality 8-Day duration movement has six latched pillars and a very unusual trip repeat work mechanism for repeating from above or below. There is also evidence that the movement originally had shutters to protect the movement from damp, dust or dirt. The hours are sounded on a bell with rack and snail strike.

Gulielmus (William) Clement is most probably the son of the William Clement who made the famous Kings College, Cambridge turret clock in 1671 and who claimed the invention of the anchor escapement. He was born circa 1643 and was apprenticed to Thomas Chapman (the same master as his brother, Francis) in 1656 – 1657. He was made a Free Brother in the Clockmakers’ Company in December 1677 as a ‘great clockmaker’. In 1678 he was made an Assistant within the Company very prematurely “by unanimous consent and approbation and for good reasons and especial esteem”. The question is: was the preferential treatment given to him due to the fact he, William Junior, had just invented the anchor escapement? The question is still unanswered. He became Master of the Clockmakers’ Company in 1694 and is said to have died in 1709. This clock is of very fine quality like all of his work and has a number of unusual and innovative features viz the substantial trip repeat mechanism and the evidence for the fitting of shutters to the movement when the clock was first made.
Height 80.00 inch (203.20 cm)
Howard Walwyn Ltd Fine Antique Clocks

Howard Walwyn Ltd Fine Antique Clocks
123 Kensington Church Street
W8 7LP

+44 (0)20-7938 1100
+44 (0)7768 096869
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