20¼ inches (516 mm)
The case of simplified architectural form in ebony and ebonised fruitwood veneers onto an oak and pine carcass. The full depth architectural pediment, set on either slope with matching raised rectangular panels above a plain frieze, over the unadorned front door that has a fine glazing frame-moulding, the side glazed apertures with matching mouldings. The flat back veneered, and with a pediment shaped fretted aperture framed by raised mouldings, above the solid rear door. The main plinth moulding resting, and rotating, on a restored square-edge veneered turntable base with ebonised bun feet.
The 8 x 9 inches (206 x 232 mm) rectangular brass dial retains its original firegilding and the very fine matting shimmers like shot silk when viewed obliquely. This is surrounded by a narrow burnished edge-margin, and centered by an engraved Tudor rose. The slender silvered chapter ring with inner quarter division ring, Roman hour numerals and stylised fleur-de-lys half-hour marks, the outer Arabic minutes marked every 5, within the ring. The original hour and minute hands of early form, finely pierced and well-shaped in blue steel, with the winding squares placed above the centre without shutters; the dial is secured to the movement via four ‘reverse-knopped’ and pinned dial feet.
The substantial movement, retaining traces of original gilding, with seven attractive shallow vase-shaped baluster pillars, proud-riveted to the frontplate and pinned on the backplate. The large diameter spring barrels driving the substantial fusees with gut lines, also with large diameter greatwheels resulting in high position winding squares on the dial. The going train with engraved apron to the knife-edge verge escapement and short bob pendulum; the strike train governed by a small gilt-brass countwheel engraved with a Tudor rose and Arabic numbering of each locking slot, mounted high on the backplate and engaging a cocked detent lever, striking the hours on a large vertically mounted bell. The backplate is plain apart from the bold engraved signature, John Hilderson Londini Fecit, in early cursive script in an downward curve below centre. The movement held in the case by later plain brackets.
Private collection Brixham, Devon, bought by GH Bell of Winchester and sold c.1950;
Ullyett, In Quest of Clocks, 1950, p.142-6;
Knife-edge verge with short bob pendulum
John Hilderson, London Circa 1664 – Exhibit No 7
A rare and early Charles II ebony and ebonised architectural striking verge table clock on a turntable base