Lot No. 446 (91st Auction)
Lepaute, Horologer de l'Empereur à Paris, Height 520 mm, circa 1780

A representative mantel clock "Urania", muse of astronomy, with half hour / hour strike and musical movement playing 6 melodies
Case: ormolu, two-part rectangular base. Base with sound holes on all sides: open-work arches decorated with flowers and lined with red silk. Rectangular clock base, arches with flower ornaments. On the base sits a sculpture of Urania, muse of astronomy, holding a telescope. She embraces the clock, which sits on a stack of books and is decorated with laurel scrolls. At Urania’s feet are a celestial globe, maps with the signs of the zodiac and instruments - the attributes of Urania. Dial: enamel, radial Arabic numerals, signed, pierced and gilt hands. Movm.: round brass full plate movement, firegilt, 1 hammer / 1 bell, 2 barrels, anchor escapement, count wheel, short pendulum. Musical movement: heavy brass movement with gut/fusee and governor, large pinned brass barrel with vibrating blades, 17 bells and 27 hammers.

The definite book "Vergoldete Bronzen" by H. Ottomeyer and P. Pröschel (Vol. I, p. 162) shows a nearly identical clock by Pierre-Antoine Foullet, created around 1760. The book attributes this pendulum clock to the renowned neo-classical French sculptor Augustin Pajou (1730-1809) - the reason for this are the parallels in the shape of the female figure, the fall of the garment and the tilted head.
A nearly identical mantel clock is illustrated and described in Elke Niehüser's "Die französische Bronzeuhr: eine Typologie der figürlichen Darstellungen", Munich 1997, p. 82.

Pierre-Basile Lepaute (1750-1843)
Pierre-Basile Lepaute (who called himself Sully-Lepaute) took over the famous company established in the 1740s and ran it together with his son Pierre-Michel Lepaute (1785-1849). He held the title of Horloger de l'Empereur during the Empire and Horloger du Roi at the Restoration and the July Monarchy. Lepaute’s company was the main supplier of clocks to the Garde-Meuble during the times of the Empire. He was admitted to the Exhibitions of the Products of the Industry in 1819 and 1823.
The Lepautes were one of France’s leading clock and watchmaking families. They were inventors and writers as well as researchers and exceptional craftsmen. Their clients included Louis XV, Louis XVI, Madame du Barry, Duc de Bourbon, the Princesse de Monaco, King Ferdinand VI, King Charles III and Charles IV of Spain.
Estimate  50,000 - 65,000 €

Price Realised  63,300 €
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