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'The Polwarth' by Thomas Mudge

  • Mechanism



Height: 10.000 cm

M&ME 1995,2-7,1

Room 38-39: Clocks and Watches

    'The Polwarth' by Thomas Mudge

    London, England, around AD 1768

    A miniature travelling clock

    Following his experimental clock in which he incorporated his first lever escapement, Thomas Mudge went on to make only a small number of machines with his new escapement. Of these, a watch made for Queen Charlotte is still in the Royal Collections.

    This little travelling clock is thought to be the second to contain Mudge's new escapement. It is a tour-de-force of the clockmaker's art and typical of Mudge's work. As well as telling the time and going for eight days at one wind, this marvellous little clock strikes the hours and sounds the last hour and quarter at the pull of a cord. The movement and dial are housed in an unusual, cylindrical, tortoiseshell case with gilt-brass bezel and ball feet. There is also a mahogany carrying case for protection during transport.

    The clock was originally made for a Mr Geddes and work began on it in about 1766. By 1774, however, it had been purchased by Mudge’s patron, Count von Brühl, in whose family it remained until it was purchased by The British Museum in 1995.

    C. Allix, Carriage clocks: their history (Woodbridge, Antique Collectors' Club, 1974)

    C. Allix, Carriage clocks: their history (Woodbridge, Antique Collectors' Club, 1974)


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