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Lot 767 - 07 Nov 2017

Autumn Fine Auction

A rare and unusual pyramidical brass skeleton timepiece of eighteen-day duration
By John Pace, Bury St. Edmunds, No. 253, circa 1855

The cast frame of good gauge, with chamfered edges on scrolled feet, the movement with going barrel and three wheels to the escape wheel, each of five or six crossings, with Graham's deadbeat escapement, inset jewelled pallets, surmounted by an arched bridge with fine knurled screw adjustment for regulating to the spring suspension, steel and brass halberd-shaped pendulum, the pierced and engine-turned gilt dial with Arabic numerals, blued steel spade hands, linked by a fine thread at the back to drive the hands, on an oval tapering base, signed 'John Pace BURY St. EDMUNDS No. 253', raised on a velvet plinth and rosewood stand, under a glass dome, (1 pendulum, 1 key).

The timepiece 33cm high; 43cm high overall. Illustrated


John Pace (d. 1867) lived and worked in Bury St. Edmunds. His workshop was at 19 Abbeygate Street. He exhibited a virtually identical skeleton timepiece, of three-month duration, at the 1851 Great Exhibition.

See Antiquarian Horology, No. 1, Vol. 34, March 2013, for an article on the Pace family of Quaker clockmakers, by David Edmund Pace.

This clock is illustrated in Derek Roberts' Skeleton Clocks, Britain 1800-1914, Antique Collectors Club, 1996, fig. 3/15a, p. 97, and other Pace clocks are discussed p. 89-97.

Condition report

The clock is in good original condition and currently working.  The upper surfaces on the plate edes, pillars on the barrel (at the appropriate point) are slightly spotted.

 (1 pendulum, 1 key).

Estimate £2,000 - £3,000
Sold For £3,200