Fine movement by this famous firm with rare 'dovetail' lever escapement, circa 1820.
Fullplate fusee movement with finely engraved cock of typical 'narrow nosed' shape, as favoured by the firm at this period. Single-roller detached lever escapement with dovetail-shaped jewel and single-pin banking via a forked tail. Flat steel balance with compensation-curb and spiral balance-spring with detachable, screw held stud, a sign of top quality finishing. Beautiful dial of the form favoured by the firm with outside minute track and 'Vulliamy dots' every 5 minutes. 46 mm diameter, 12.5 mm deep, not including dial or centre arbor.
Justin Vulliamy and son Benjamin, Clockmakers to King George III and the Prince Regent, later George IV, suppliers of best quality clocks and watches to the English aristocracy, the new Houses of Parliament as well as many London clubs and institutions. NB: The code used by this firm, which changed from three to four letters around 1812, has yet to be fully understood.
The 'dovetail' lever escapement is one of the least known and least recorded detached escapements, although it first appears soon after Edward Massey patents his lever escapement with its various forms of roller. The 'dovetail', Savage 2-pin, single-roller and other variants were almost certainly designed to avoid infringing Massey's patent, but just which escapement maker/s were responsible is yet to be discovered. The finish and action of all the few examples handled by me is very good indeed, as it is in this movement.
Lacking hands, dial with old patched restoration and balance-staff pivots bent or broken. Otherwise the movement in good original condition and a very early example of this rare lever escapement. Not working.
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