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John Bennett, Cheapside, London, England, c. 1870. Movement net - 22 1/4h x 19"w x 13"d, with dome and base - 33"h x 24"w x 13 1/2"d. Three train, eight day chain fusee, quarter striking with Whittington tune on eight bells, hours on coiled steel gong. Graham dead beat escapement, Harrison maintaining power. Compensated mercury jar pendulum.

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This clock was made as an exhibition piece either as a headliner advertisement for Bennett's own company or for a trade show. It is likely a one of a kind. The movement is massive having both front and rear plates cast of one piece of brass ranging in thickness from 1/4" to over 7/8". The frame is gilded, heavily articulated and carved with scrollwork in high relief, polished edges and stippled interior areas. Plates held by eight large double baluster pillars of 3/4" diameter by 3 3/4" length. Strike spring barrels 3 1/4" diameter by 3 1/4" wide. The silvered dial is is 10 1/2" and has blue enamel chapters. Blued hands with polished steel strike lever work. Net weight at 75 lb.

Bennett was chiefly a high quality clock and watch retailer as well as a jeweler (like Cartier). It was a widely known and respected firm. His father was a watchmaker and John set up his own firm in 1848 which continued until 1940. There is a three part article on this maker in Clocks Magazine begining June 2005.

Provenance:  Christie's, New York June 2005, lot #62, formerly Robert O. Schmitt collection, formerly London dealer Keith Banham, 1981.

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