Objects with musical mechanism and automaton

Singing bird box with inserted clock

    Singing bird box with inserted clock


    Circa 1900

    Brass, steel, feathers; casting, glazed enamel, painted enamel

    14.5 x 8.7 x 7.7 cm, 791 gr

    On the lid inner side numbers in rectangular frame: "8986"


    Singing bird box in rectangular case with rounded vertical ribs and hinged top lid made of gilded metal. Convex panels covered with blue enamel with painted images of flowers and leaves on the branches are fixed on the lateral sides. The perimeter of the panels is decorated with a thin border of small milky white cabochons in gold rosette. The case stands on moulded rococo false feet. The lid inner side is draped with Bordeaux cloth with light braided edges. A horizontal panel with thin engraving covering the bird's movement is under the lid. A clock with white enamel dial and two black central hands is in the left part of panel. Black Arabic numerals are on the dial, minutes graduations and keyhole. Oval lid with painted miniature depicting a shepherd and a shepherdess with sheep on the riverbank is in the right part of the panel. The lid automatically opens when the movement is activated; a miniature bird in painted feathers appears from under it. It turns in place, flaps its wings, opens and closes the beak. The sound movement imitates bird’s chirping. At the end of the program, the bird hides under the openwork gilded lattice and the lid is lowered.

    The sliding switch of the bird movement is near the lid. Keyhole is in the box bottom. Small brass key is for the clock winding, the silver plated key – for the bird’s movement.