A small French Louis XV Vernis Martin bracket clock, Mareau circa 1735
The dial consists of thirteen enamel pieces, one for every numeral and one for the centre. These thirteen piece dials were only made for a short period around 1730 – 1745. Thus typical for the Louis XV period. The centre is signed Mareau A Orleans and the hands are made of blued steel.
The spring driven movement has a duration of two weeks. It has verge escapement and a silk suspended pendulum. It strikes the hours and half hours by means of countwheel striking on a bell.
The shaped and waisted case has foliate and scrolling bronze mounts throughout and is surmounted by an ornamental urn. It is throughout adorned by painted polychrome flowers on a green ground. This lacquer technique is called ‘Vernis Martin’. In the middle of the 18th Century four brother named Martin had a large workshop specializing in this decoration. Although they didn’t invent the technique nor were they the only ones doing it, their name stuck.
The case is placed on a matching ogee shaped bracket.