A Dutch table clock with a VII-inch square dial. The silver-plated chapter ring signed ‘Fromanteel, Amsterdam’ on a gilded brass plate with fine matted centre. Above the VI, a calendar aperture; blued steel hands, a silvered alarm disc, the four corners embellished by gold-lacquered, winged cherub spandrels. The movement with a verge escapement and a striking mechanism on a count wheel, mounted on the back plate, striking the whole hours on the large bell and the half hours on the small bell (Dutch Striking). On the right side a pull for winding the spring driven alarm. A richly engraved foliate cartouche with signature "Fromanteel, Amsterdam" on the finely engraved backplate. The striking mechanism on the countwheel is mounted on this backplate.
The rectangular case with an oak frame veneered with walnut. The case rests on a flared simple plinth that stands on four bun feet. On both sides of the door a brass escutcheon decorated with volute motifs. On the left, the escutcheon with a lock behind it. The top jamb of the door is equipped with a fretwork sound window covered by white silk on the other side. Above the door is a profiled plinth which is crowned by the sarcophagus-shaped hood. It is decorated with an open worked gilded copper embossed appliqué, shaped as a ‘mascaron’ surrounded by acanthus leaves. The clock features a brass carrying handle the top.
Ahasverus Fromanteel (1607-1693) was the first of a prominent family of English-Dutch clockmakers. He settled in London in 1625. From his marriage to Maria de Bruijne in 1631, three sons were born, all of whom became prominent clock makers. They settled in 1680 on the Vijgendam (known today as Dam Square) in Amsterdam. With branches in London, Amsterdam and Newcastle, the Fromanteel family formed the first multinational dynasty of clock makers. During the 1680s, the three brothers Fromanteel, Johannes, Ahasuerus II and Abraham decided to use one common signature, namely Fromanteel without initials or place of residence.
In 1694, Christopher Clarke (1668-c. 1730) married the only daughter of Ahasuerus II, Anna. After 1696, Ahasuerus II associated with his son-in-law Christopher Clarke under the name Fromanteel & Clarke. After Ahasuerus II’s death, Clarke started a partnership in 1703 with Abraham, the last remaining Fromanteel. They used the Fromanteel and Clarke signature, without a branch location. It was until 1722 that clocks were manufactured under the name Fromanteel.
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