Mechanical Compositions

Musical automaton with clock

    Musical automaton with clock

    France, Paris

    Circa 1870

    Richir F.

    Wood, brass, glass, steel, cardboard, enamel; carpentry and mechanical works, casting, painting

    Height 56.5 cm


    Wooden base with clock tower maquette is mounted on the right side of black wooden stand upper panel that stands on four feet. Watermill building stands in front of a hill with house and a windmill on top. A string of soldiers’ figurines with guns is on the arched bridge. Three-masted sailing ship with flags and pennants is fighting the waves in front of the bridge. White enamel dial is on the tower. The dial with Roman numerals, minute divisions on the external ring, two openwork hands and two apertures with pins for winding the clockwork and clock strike, in bezel with regular embossed pattern ornament. Cam mechanism for automaton control and musical movement with pinned cylinder, sound comb and spring drive are inside the stand. An aperture with cord for winding and two levers for activating the mechanisms are on the left side panel. The clock mechanism is pendulum, with eight-day period winding, with lever escapement, two spring motors, hourly strike with counter on the counting wheel, number “2934” and mark with the inscription “RICHIR F. PARIS RUE DE SAINTONGE, 43” in oval.
    When the mechanism of the automaton and the musical movement are activated, melody sounds, water wheel rotates, the windmill winds move, the ship sways on the waves, soldiers march across the bridge. Protective glass cup is in the set.