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Lot No. 403
Lot No. 403
Estimate  12,000 - 16,000 €
This is a lot of the last auction!

Robin à Chalons, Height 370 mm

, circa 1810

An important Directoire gilt and patinated bronze "Pendule Au Bon Sauvage" - "Le Portefaix" with half hour/hour strike

Case: firegilt and patinated bronze, partly polished. Dial: enamel. Movm.: circular brass full plate movement, 1 hammer / 1 bell, anchor escapement, count wheel, short pendulum with silk string suspension and star-shaped pendulum bob.

The round enamel dial is integrated in a large bale of cotton, which a man carries on his back while walking along at a good pace. He supports himself with a bamboo walking stick he carries in his left hand and holds a letter in his right. The man wears a wide-brimmed hat to protect his face from the sun; his expression is friendly and his eyes are bright.
The figure stands on an oval, polished base which is decorated with applied bas-relief ornamentation, showing a small monkey swinging on a vine and birds of paradise sitting on baskets filled with fruit.

The so-called "Portefaix" motif was designed by bronze artist Jean André Reiche in 1808 and used by a number of clockmakers. Unusual in this piece is that the figure is self-supporting, almost like a stand-alone sculpture. The clock movement is fully integrated in the picture.

Different versions of this clock can be seen in important museums such as the Musée des Arts Décoratifs in Paris.

An almost identical "Portefaix" is illustrated and described in "Die Französische Bronzeuhr" by Elke Niehüser, Munich 1997, page 149; also in Tardy’s Vol. 2, La Pendule Francaise, Paris, 1981, page 248, and in "Clocks: Their origin and development 1320-1880" by H.M. Vehmeyer, vol. II, Wilsele 2004, p. 874 - 877.
Case: very good
Dial: very good
Movm.: very good, capable of running

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