Nicolaus Rugen, Munich, Height 59 mm, circa 1880
A rare one-handed Historism period miniature watch in the form of a water jug
Case: 14k gold. Dial: gilt. Movm.: circular full plate movement, cord/fusee, verge escapement.
The unusual case in the form of an antique water jug is decorated with engraved masks and floral vases on the back, the front is engraved with dolphin heads and a mermaid, the sides and the lip with masks in relief. The centre of the dial is engraved with a dancing couple.
In his mention of Nicolaus Rugen in his book "Meister der Uhrmacherkunst" (masters of watchmaking), 2nd edition, Wuppertal 2010, Juergen Abeler refers to the renowned Augsburg family Rugendas, makers of watches and compasses:
Nicolaus I Rugendas, was born in Melsungen (Hesse) in 1582 and went to Augsburg in 1608; he became a master in 1616 and died in 1658. He was known to be a very capable watch and clockmaker and was also fortunate enough to marry well (1608, Sarah Schmidt). He was registered as master of the guild in 1638/39. Of his nine children, two sons Hans Jakob I and Nicolaus II (born in 1619) were also clockmakers. His son Nicolaus II Rugendas lived as clockmaker in Augsburg from 1619 to 1695. His master piece was a table clock, which was bought by Archduke Leopold Wilhelm in 1661. Several dozen of mechanical clocks as well as sun- and moon dials by Nicolaus II remain; however, it is not completely clear whether the mechanical clocks may have been created by his father. His son Nicolaus III (1665 -1745) was also a compass- and watchmaker.
Provanance: Baron von Goldschmidt
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