MORTONS English Lever 'By Royal Letters Patent' No 30174


The only known complete example of this 'Patent' Centre Seconds watch, in lovely original condition.

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Silver case with stop/start slide in the barrel-edge band at 2, hallmarked 1884, casemaker T.W, (Thomas Webb, Coventry). Capped fullplate fusee movement with stop/start action under the dial, the cock numbered 30174. Single-roller detached lever escapement. Gold balance, spiral balance-spring. Perfect enamel dial with red and gold enamel crown and with the Patent Number(?) 12117. Gold hands with blued-steel centre and offset seconds. 57 mm diameter

Josiah Elijah Morton (1850-1915), Coventry, son of Josiah Morton, watch manufacturers.

I can find no record of any Patent that relates to this watch, and it may be that it was manufactured during the period when a provisional Patent looked likely only to be later refused, perhaps because of the earlier Patent granted to William Douglas, No 4164, in 1881 - an example of a watch of this Patent also for sale/sold by me. NB: It may be significant that 1884 was the first year that the numbering of English horological patents ran into five figures and the number 12,117 would date it to around September of that year.

In good original condition, the light engine-turning to the case showing some use, but no abuse. Sold with a correctly fitting key if required. One of only two known examples, serviced and guaranteed.