John CROSS, No 34624, for Chas HILL, London


£ 225.00

Good lever movement with rare balance, circa 1825.

More details

Nicely finished fullplate fusee movement jewelled to the 3rd with cap jewels on balance (diamond) and lever, the frame stamped 188, the cock foot engraved PATENT and the cap stamped RE, as often found in the best London work of the period. Single-roller detached lever escapement, the lever with rack/early Savage shaped counterpoise. Compensation balance of early Pennington 'double T' pattern, blued-steel spiral balance spring with polished steel gallows stud. One-piece enamel dial, original gold hands. 46.5 mm diameter, 13.5 mm deep, not including centre arbor.

Charles Hill, a name not recorded by Bailie or Loomes but may be the goldsmith recorded in the last edition of Britten.

This style of lever movement, with its distinctive cock and unusual balance, is associated with John Cross, Charterhouse Square, London, noted as a 'watch and clock wholesaler' in trade directories of the period. This points to him being a real manufacturer and, judging by the fact that he was among the first to fit Pennington's screw balances in pocket watches, is likely to have had a close working relationship with this important firm of watch and chronometer manufacturers.

NB: This balance was not intended to provide middle temperature compensation. The screw at the free end of the bimetallic rim was used to lock it in place while any of the meantime or compensation crews were moved in or out or along the rims. This stopped the relatively soft rims from being permanently distorted when adjustments were being made. Just what the other screw mounted in the brass 'T' was intended for is open to question.

One small chip in dial, at the seconds hole, otherwise in fine complete and original condition including the delicate hands. Not cleaned by me but will tick happily if wound.