Ben(jamin) Gray, London, No. tui, 48 mm, 120 g, circa 1760
An important pair-cased gold enamel pocket watch of museum quality with quarter repeater "à toc" Case: outer case - 22k gold, back cover with fine polychrome enamel painting: Cupid is held by the nymphs, based on a painting by Angelica Kauffman (1741 - 1807) "Entwaffnung Amors durch drei Nymphen" ("Cupid being disarmed by the three nymphs") and a green enamelled man's head en profile wearing a crown, engine-turned and green translucent enamel foliate border, à goutte. Inner case - 22k gold, polished, case maker’s punch mark "PM". Dial: enamel, radial Roman hours, blued "Poker & Beetle" hands. Movm.: fine full plate movement, keywind, applied floral decorations, firegilt, signed, chain/fusee, verge escapement, 1 hammer, three-arm steel balance, blued balance spring, fine florally engraved and pierced balance cock with mascaron, diamond endstone on balance.
Both watch cases were undoubtedly created in 22k gold but bear no British gold marks. Hallmarks were a legal requirement in Great Britain and of course connected to a tax duty. The only pieces exempt from this was goldware specially produced for the royal house, which indicates that this piece was delivered to court.
Benjamin Gray (1676-1764) Benjamin Gray is recorded as an eminent maker working in Pall Mall with his partner Justin Vulliamy. They were appointed clockmakers to the King. Today Benjamin Gray's clocks are held by many private collections. Source: "Watchmakers and Clockmakers of the World" by G.H. Baillie, vol. I, Edinburgh/London 1947, p. 130.
Estimate 55,000 - 75,000 €
This is a lot of a former auction!
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