Saturday, March 1, 2014

Precious Time: King George III’s Barometrical Clock, 1763-5

Crown Copyright
The Royal Collection
via The Royal Collection Trust
Image Courtesy of Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II

Barometrical Clock
Scot Alexander Cumming
For King George III
The Royal Collection

George III’s keen interest in science led him to amass an impressive collection of scientific instruments and clocks in the early part of his reign. The barometrical clock from 1763 to 1765 was made for the King by Scot Alexander Cumming who included an exquisite clock mechanism, a month-long calendar and a barometer in the design.

The gorgeous case is of unknown origin, but features inlaid shell and exceptionally sculpted ormolu mounts of flowers, volutes and a figural group of “Time” assisted by Cupid. King George III kept the clock along with several of his favorite devices in his private suite at Buckingham House (now Buckingham Palace).

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