A rare Morbier lantern wall clock, Claude Reynaud, circa 1730
8-day movement with half hour striking, brass and iron case
17-cm brass dial with engraved leaves and Roma numerals signed Clavde Reynaud A Mont Brison, above a pierced fret with foliate leaves and a cown inscribed MdC, lovely brass hour hand, 8-day weight driven movement with verge esapement and long wire pendulum, rack striking for the hours and passing strike for the half hours on a bell, iron frame on turned brass feet and surmounted by brass finials, on a later iron wall bracket
In the Franche Comté area in North West of France a clockmaking tradition emerged at the start of the 18th Century that would lead to the ‘Morbier clocks’. There a few families with a blacksmith tradition turned to clockmaking since they were used to work with metal. Between 1700 and 1730 a clock was developed in a metal case with side doors, a pierced brass cresting and a strong 8-day movement with long folding pendulum. This folding pendulum made it easy to transport the clock all over France. Probably the weights were made locally were the clock was sold as well as the cases fit to local taste. Around 1750 a certain standard clock had developed but before that one can sometimes find different types. A rare type is the ‘Morbier Lantern clock’ which doesn’t have the metal case but has feet and finials just as a more usual lantern clock. But it does have the typical 8-day movement with its long folding pendulum. Early Morbier clocks are rare but only a few percent were made of this lantern type. A nice feature nowadays is that the movement is visible and because of the clean lines makes it easy to place in any interior. This well running easy to use clock is not only functional but a rare piece not often seen even by connaisseurs.