Oarsman automaton (c. 1880 France)

 Oarsman automaton
Title Oarsman automaton
Country of Origin France
Dated c. 1880
Classification A R GUILMET, PARIS (worked c.1870-1900)
Signed/Inscribed/Dated GLT
Condition very good
Dimensions 13.50inch wide (34.29 cm wide)
16.50inch high (41.91 cm high)
Status SOLD
Description / Expertise

D 170. Andre Roman Guilmet’s boat clock with automaton rower, circa 1880.

Guilmet was a brilliant inventor, taking out a large number of patents during his lifetime. His principal claims to fame, so far as horology is concerned, are his mystery clocks and those representing various examples of the industrial revolution, which were produced in a bewildering variety of designs and some of which, such as the present one, contain automata.

This clock is particularly well designed and executed and would be an early example of Guilmet’s industrial clocks. The hull of the boat is bronzed and the furled sails, rower and choppy sea are silvered. The whole rests on a rouge marble base. The sailor rocks too and fro as he rows. The movement has a gilded dial with arabic numerals and bears Guilmet’s stamp (GLT ) on the backplate, together with Bte Sc Dc (patent), Paris, Medaille D’Or.

Ht; 16.5" (42cms. ) Width; 13.5". (34cms.) £7,350.

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