E D JOHNSON, No 27502, for Harry EMANUEL, Hanover Sq, London


Unusual independent centre-seconds movement with rare lever escapement, circa 1875.

More details

Three-quarter plate hollow back movement with unusual keyless fusee work and c-seconds balance-brake, with cap jewels on balance (diamond), lever and escape, the top plate with a chronometer-style stoned finish, the rest gilt. Very rare form of Savage 2-pin lever escapement, having all actions jewelled. Compensation balance, blued-steel balance-spring. 41 mm diameter, 6.5 mm deep, not including dial or centre arbor.

Edward Daniel Johnson (1816-1889), 9 Wilmington Square, Clerkenwell, famous London watch and chronometer maker, holder of numerous Patents and a founder member and for many years Vice-President of the British Horological Institute. Patent No 2887, November 1957, keyless fusee work.

Harry Emanuel, 21 Hanover Square and 70 & 71 Brook St, London "Goldsmith, Jeweller & Silversmith to the Queen and Prince Albert, the Royal Family, the Emperor & Empress of the French, the King & Queen of Hanover, the King of the Belgians, & the Emperor of the Brazils." Though not a common name to be seen, this exclusive firm are known to have retailed some fine and often quite individual watches, such as this - the top plate of this watch is also engraved with a crown.

George Savage invented but did not Patent his improved detached lever escapement around 1814. Examples are uncommon and tended only to be fitted to better made, more expensive watches. NB: Jewelled examples are rare, and those jewelled in all actions very rare indeed and must rate as one of, if not the rarest of all detached lever variants.

Lacking dial, hand setting (from the rear) arbor, index and stud, with damage to the motion wheels, but all restorable for anyone interested in rescuing such a rare and interesting movement. Not working.