Objects with musical mechanism and automaton

Singing bird box with clock

    Singing bird box with clock


    the 19th century

    Silver, brass, steel, feathers, steel, glass; guilloche, engraving, chasing, polishing, painted enamel, enamel over guilloche

    4.2 х 10.3 х 6.8 сm, 585 gr

    Maker's mark on the lid: “R*B”, mark in the form of a comet, “935”, “641”; on the bottom panel: “935”, mark in the form of a comet,“163", “Fabr. de Geneve”, “641”


    Singing bird box with a clock in silver case with figured vertical ribs, decorated with guilloche, engraved ornament with niello and enamel image. Guilloche field in the form of sunrays with transparent pink enamel in chased frame is the top panel. An oval aperture bordered with a chased frame and closed by a hinged lid in chased frame is in the center. The enamel lid is decorated with a typical Alpine lake scene beautifully painted and a fine pierced and engraved silver gilt lattice. The inner lid surface is mirror-polished. Side panels are with transparent rink enamel over guilloche field in polished frames and engraved black ornament in the upper corners. A glazed clock with an oval silver dial, with hour’s graduation by Arabic numerals, minute’s graduation by golden patterns; two hands of blued steel and a crown below are on the front panel. An aperture for the switching on/off the movement, screws and hallmarks are on the case bottom panel. A shifting lever for switching on the bird’s movement is on the front side to the right. When the movement is turned on, the lid automatically opens; a miniature bird in bright plumage appears on the field with a gilded lattice. It swings in place, flaps its wings, opens and closes the beak. The sound mechanism imitates sonorous bird singing. At the end of the program, the bird is hidden in the deepening under the openwork lattice and the lid is lowered.

    The movement is spring-actuated, with a fusee, system of stabilization.