Clockwatch by Nathaniel Chamberlain
Stock No. 1330
Nathaniel Chamberlain, London, c1690
Gilt pair cases, 57 mm.
Verge escapement, clockwatch
An interesting late 17th century London clockwatch in gilt brass pair cases, and with a later enamel dial.
MOVEMENT : Signed (Nat. Chamberlain, London) verge clockwatch movement. Engraved and pierced balance cock, strike barrel and plate, with floral engraving to the top plate. Fine tulip (3) and balluster (2) pillars. Large silver count wheel mounted on the top plate.
Two winding arbors, one through the balance cock which winds the fusee, and the other winds the strike barrel.
On the passing hour the hammer strikes the steel bell (inner case) for each hour.
There are repairs (signs of solder) to the black steel strike release lever, which engages the slots on the count wheel. Otherwise the movement is in good, complete working condition and running (occasionally stops if tilted but runs well face up or down. The strike is slightly out of sync, striking at 5 minutes past the hour.
DIAL : Later white enamel dial, in very good condition. Early blued steel beetle and poker hour hand but later minute hand. One of the 3 dial feet has lost the end so is no longer pinned to the movement, but the dial plate is help firmly by the other two.
INNER CASE : Heavy gilded brass, engraved on the back, and pierced around the band. Wear to the gilding but otherwise in excellent condition. The steel bell, screwed to the inside is fine with no damage or repairs.
The hinge and high dome bull’s eye crystal are fine and the bezel snaps shut.
OUTER CASE : Heavy gilded brass, plain except for sound holes around the band. Again wear to the gilding but otherwise in good condition.
The hinge, catch and catch button are all fine, and the bezels snaps shut.
Nathaniel Chamberlain (II) was free of the Clockmakers’ Company in 1685.
The style of engraving on the top plate and use of a count wheel to control the strike, indicate a date of about 1690 for this watch.