A French glass dial mystery clock, signed ‘Henri Robert Horloge Mystérieuse à Paris’, circa 1880.
A French mechanic and clockmaker in Paris, created this mysterious clock, an elegant and decorative object. A watch movement provides the drive. The case with 2 stylized griffin sculptures, consists of an alloy of different materials and has a dark patina. The griffin as a hybrid mythical creature - part lion's body, part eagle's wings - symbolized the rule over two realms, being the earth and the sky. The middle plateau shows a beautiful pattern drawing. Dimensions: HxBxD 60x34x20 cm. Price on request.
The maker, Henri Robert, Paris, worked in fourth quarter 19th century, see Tardy page 561.
Henri Robert began clockmaking in 1867 with his more famous father. The latter, also called Henri (1795-1874), studied under the great master Abraham Louis Breguet (d. 1823) and went on the make top quality clocks, watches and marine chronometers. Later his son Henri became well known for making ingenious mystery clocks; an entry in Tardy Dictionnaire des Horlogers Francais, p. 561 writes...he made some mystery clocks, one in particular where the movement of the hands is due to the displacement of their centre of gravity in the end of the hand.
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