Height

18 inches.

Case

Ebony case with acanthus scroll handle, the inverted bell top with applied gilt-brass mount with the arms of King Leopold I, surmounted with the crown of The Holy Roman Emperor, flanked by multi-piece gadrooned urn finials; glazed sides, foliate mounts and acanthus cartouche escutcheons to the front door and with gadrooned gilt feet. Numbered twice on the door sill.

Dial

7¾ x 8¾ inch dial signed Tho Tompion LONDINI Fecit within a wheatear cartouche flanked by subsidiary dials for pendulum regulation and strike selection engraved Son 6/Sil 6 Son 1/Sil 1, silvered chapter ring, mock pendulum and blued-steel hands, double-screwed Minerva mask & foliage spandrels.

Movement

Complex triple fusee full grande-sonnerie movement with seven latched baluster pillars, pivoted verge escapement with pendulum suspended from brass regulation bar. Trip quarter repeat via blued-steel double cocked interconnecting levers on the back plate signed Tho Tompion LONDINI Fecit within a wheatear cartouche on a pedestal stamped FECIT and S… the remainder now removed, within profuse foliate engraving (G.195). The front plate stamped 410.

Duration

8 days.

Provenance

Leopold I, Holy Roman Emperor (1640- 1705). Possibly a purchase or a diplomatic gift to Leopold I, when his son, the Spanish pretender Archduke Charles (by then styled Charles III of Spain), visited England to meet Queen Anne. Over three days he was entertained and owned as if he had been an adopted son of the queen, thereafter embarking for Portugal en route to claim the Spanish throne. It is possible, therefore, that the clock was a diplomatic gift from the Queen as an expression of Britain’s solidarity with the Habsburg cause;

19th Century in Italy, scratch marks dated 1865;

Private collection, USA;

The Tom Scott Collection.

Literature

Evans, Carter & Wright, Thomas Tompion 300 years, 2013,  pp. 170-3, 400-3.

Notes

The Habsburg is one of only five Tompion spring clocks to bear the arms of their original owners, the others being the Mostyn, the Medici No.278, the de Condé No.300 and the von Plessen No.388.