|This is a fine month going marquetry longcase clock with 11inch dial signed “Jonathan Lowndes Pall Mall ”, with the movement by Joseph Knibb.
This beautifully proportioned longcase clock has an 11 inch dial, narrower than the more usual 12 inch making for a far more elegant line.
The carcase is of well-grained oak, veneered in walnut, cross-banded and with strung panels to the sides and inlaid with teardrop paneled floral marquetry to the long door, typical of the period. The marquetry panels have an ebony ground and include stylized acanthus and birds in their subject matter.
Let into the long door is a circular lenticle to allow the pendulum bob to be viewed and the door has “D” cut mouldings.
The construction of the hoods follow normal practice, but is cut to allow the hood door to open outwards rather than the original rising hood since this is usually unsuitable for modern homes with low ceilings. Marquetry surrounds the window frame but is not found on the cushion moulding below the hood, a later convention. The hood door is framed in ebonised beech twist columns. Sound holes in the frieze have restored frets over silk.
The seat board has the original spikes to hold the movement in place.
The clear well proportioned 11 inch brass dial with finely matted center and ringed winding holes, John Knibb favoured this style, and Joseph used it occasionally.
The silvered brass chapter ring is typical Knibb having minutes within sectors and small fleur de lys half hour markers. Fine foliate cherub head spandrels, fire gilded to each corner of the dial. Lower dial plate signed in script; “ Jonathan Lowndes, Pall Mall”
Kite shaped date sector at “XII” enclosed by restrained engraving and script numbers. Original fine blued steel hands with the minute hand being exceptionally slim and well formed, the hour hand has extended loops of shallow depth with a turned central boss.
The movement is certainly of Knibb construction; it is a tall five pillars movement with latched plates and dial. This count wheel striking clock has a small crossed-out countwheel on the 2nd arbor of the strike train and having turned collets and is set externally and high on the back plate of the movement. The barrel arbors protrude through the back plate, (Knibb’s usually did).
The going/strike 2nd wheels have large “ high count “ pinions. The bridgeless motion work typical of Knibb with a lifting piece operating upon the cannon wheel.
The five wheel going trains have Knibb’s tapered arbors with high count pinions, several wheels are mounted against the movement plates without collets, where collets used they are domed in Knibb’s fashion.
The movement has a very small escape wheel, the steel crutch is squared onto the pallet arbor, and steady pins and screws fix the back cock.
The clock has retained the original pendulum and weights.
The family of Jonathan Lowndes ( Loundes) were clockmakers in France when, prior to the “Edict of Nantes” of 1685, religious persecution forced them to flee to England around 1679. Jonathan opened shop in Pall Mall, and in his early years there he appears to have bought his best movements from Joseph Knibb in Fleet Street. These “month” movements may be compared to any bearing Joseph’s signature. Height 6 foot 7 inches. Max width 19inches max depth 9.5 inches.