Edward ORTON, London


£ 7,950.00

Lovely example of a rare 'sun and moon' dial, circa 1695.

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Fine silver paircase, the outer with square joint, concave bezel and containing a poignant hand stitched watch token, the inner with loose-ring pendant, both cases stamped 'W' and 'Ia' (an unrecorded combination that may be William Jaques). Nicely engraved fullplate fusee movement with tulip pillars, the pillar plate also stamped 'Ia.' Verge (recoil) escapement. Steel balance, spiral balance-spring. Beautiful two-piece silver champleve dial, the central disc revolving in 24 hours and engraved with a gold sun and a silver moon indicating the hours of daylight and night, the single hand indicating the minutes, the rear of the dial stamped 'IW' (John Willoughby). 54 mm diameter.

Edward Orton, a Freeman of the Clockmakers' Company between 1687 and 1709, marrying twice, the first time to the daughter of Robert Williamson in 1691 - see Loomes The Early Clockmakers of Great Britain for more information.

William Jaques and John Willoughby are known collaborators at this period, working for many of the best watchmakers in London, this being a particularly fine example of case and dial, both of which are in very good original condition, and I would be pleased to know if anyone has seen another example of this  'Ia' stamp. NB: A similar sun and moon dialled watch by Joseph Windmills is shown by Neale, and another by Richard Williamson is shown by Cuss in The English Watch 1585-1970 . This was offered as part of the Djanogly collection at Sothebys in 2016, making just under £10,000. This collaboration by Orton, Jaques(?) and Willoughby is a better example.

Some wear showing to the pendant and the movement showing some of the expected signs of use, the case and dial in particularly good unpolished condition for a change - the best I have handled. A fine and early example of it type, recently serviced and guaranteed.