A miniature pendant form watch in the shape of a tulip.
MOVEMENT : Oval, hinged, silver full plate, vase pillars, fusee and chain. The verge, wheels and most of the other parts are made of silver. The two arm balance (with later spring) has a small screwed cock and is signed (?) or decorated with a fly on the movement.
DIAL : Silver, hinged, oval. Roman hour chapter with quarter hour markers, half hour markers, centre engraved with a town scene and a pool in the right. The border is engraved florally. Blued steel hand.
CASE : Silver case in the shape of a tulip, chased with three petals of which one forms the front cover. Parts of the petals are matted. Pendant with a loose ring.
Total height 41 mm, without pendant 30 mm, thickness 24 mm , width 24 mm. Movement 21 x 27 mm.
Tulip cases, pendants, hands and engravings were evidence of the so called” tulipomania” which began when the botanist Carolus Clusius brought tulips for research purposes from Constantinople to the University of Leiden in Holland in 1593. Some bulbs were stolen from his garden and planted and this was the start of the Dutch tulip trade. The upper classes, first in Holland, then abroad, grew uncommonly fond of them and tulips steadily increased in popularity and in price. In 1636 for instance, one Viceroy tulip cost approximately as much as ten tons of cheese. It is no wonder that the tulip became a popular decorative theme.