A Louis XV ormolu and corne verte musical table clock, Saint Germain and Dauthiau, Paris, circa 1760 - Photo Sotheby's

4¼-inch enamel dial signed L Dauthiau, Hger Du Roy, A Paris, finely pierced and engraved gilt hands, bell striking movement with star-cut outsdie count wheel and flat-bottomed plates, the waisted case cast with rococo scrolls, on a rocaille plinth signed St Germain, the bombé base containing the fusee musical movement playing one of ten tunes played on a carrillon of ten bells with nineteen hammers, the whole with folaite mounts, musical trophy fret to the front and trellis frets to the sides and rear stamped to the base St Germain JME; 53cm. 21in. high. Estimation: 70,000 - 90,000 GBP

PROVENANCE: Kunsthandel Albrecht Neuhaus, Würzburg

LITTERATURE: Pierre Kjellberg, Encylopédie de La Pendule Francaise, Paris 1997, pp.118-119

NOTE DE CATALOGUE: This attractive clock is one of a series of similar cases by St Germain supplied to different clockmakers. Jean-Joseph de St Germain (1719-1791) was the son of cabinet-maker Joseph de St. Germain. In 1749 he married Anne Legrand, widow of a cabinet maker named Jean-Paul Matthieu and their son, Jean de St. Germain also became a bronze worker. St. Germain is first recorded as an ouvrier libre in the Faubourg St. Antoine where he had a workshop in the rue de Charenton. Among his apprentices was Jean Gayer, who later became a cabinet and clock-case maker. On 15th July 1748, St. Germain was registered as a maître fondeur en terre et sable. In 1765, he was elected Juré of the Bronze Founders Guild for two years and in this capacity actively campaigned for the bronze founders copyright resolution which was finally ratified on 21st April 1766. In this same year St. Germain' s son was made Maître -while the father was Juré.

Louis Dauthiau (1713-after 1769) took the title of Horologer du Roi in 1751 and was chosen by Passement to create the movement of the famous astronomical clock supplied to Louis XV in 1753. He was responsible for the maintainance of clocks at Versailles and is known to have used cases by Saint Germain.

Sotheby's. Arts of Europe. London | 04 déc. 2012 www.sothebys.com