Mantel and Table Clocks

Mystery clock with half an hour chime

    Mystery clock with half an hour chime

    France, Paris

    the 1850s

    Robert-Houdin, Jean-Eugène , Japy Frères & Cie

    Wood, metal, glass. brass, velvet; casting, blackening, gilding, mechanical work

    50 x 23.5 x 18 cm, 7 kg

    On mounting plate: “Robert Houdin Paris”, “JAPY FRERES & Cie.”, “ MED’HONN”, “EXP”, “1855”, “R”


    Mystery clock in brass nielloed case, on a pedestal with ornately shaped gilded base, on a pyramidal wooden stand with a top panel covered with burgundy velvet. Gilded cast ornament is on the case front surface: a child “Atlas” supporting a cornice. Black bronze composition in the form of a griffin resting on acanthus leaf is on the clock upper panel. Round glazed white enamel dial in cast figured embossed gilded bezel, with the Roman numerals, minute graduations and two blued steel hands designating hours is fixed on the griffin. A key is in the set.
    The clock belongs to the first series of mystery clocks, in which driving mechanism from the clock movement to the clock hands is put through the hollow griffin figure and an acanthus leaf on which the dial is mounted.