Antique Wall Clock French Toleware Circa 1850 by CONSTANTIN DETOUCHE Paris


Constantin Louis Detouche (1810-1889), a gifted clockmaker known for his extremely fine workmanship, had his shop/workshop in the Rue Saint-Martin in Paris. Probably the most important clockmaker of his day in all of France, Detouche was awarded the French Légion d’Honneur in 1853 for his contributions to horology, was the official clockmaker to the city of Paris and to the Emperor Napoleon III, as well. We have included a black and white etching of him circa 1879.

Detouche's charming circa 1850 French Provincial style wall clock has an octagonal two-level tin case with various hand painted beige flowers on a japanned black background. The dial has painted Roman numerals with black steel hour and minute hands and a single winding hole. (There is no key present so we don't know if it is in working condition.) The dial is surrounded by a beaded and swirled brass bezel and has a hinged glass cover. It's signed "C. Detouche Rue St. Martin" under the number XII.

The reverse side has three swivel tabs that open to show the brass clock works, which are also signed C. Detouche, Rue St. Martin along with the number 357, which matches the number on the pendulum bob, proving it is original. There are notations by different hands and with different dates, probably by those who worked on the clock through the last 170 years. There is also the round impressed mark of Japy Freres, a prominent Parisian clockmaker, which presumably supplied one or more parts for this clock (we believe it was the dial).

The clock has the brass ball and hanging ring at the top that is typical for its era; we left them unpolished for those who prefer the darkened look. The clock is 12 inches wide, 4 1/2 inches in total depth and measures 16 inches from the bottom to the top of the ring (the clock alone is 11 inches tall.) It weighs 3 3/4 pounds and is in good condition. The paint is alligatored but all intact save for a few chips and the back has many scratches, but it displays beautifully and will take pride of place in any room, especially one with a French flair.


PYH 5432

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