£400k for a clock built during London's Great Fire

A clock dating to around 1670 has sold for £400,000 at Bonhams New Bond Street sale of Fine Clocks and Barometers on December 15.

The final total for the sale reached almost £2m.

Sold for £400,000
Sold for £400,000

"This is a fantastic result. This clock was made while the ashes from the great fire of London were still cooling. Impeccable provenance, rarity and immaculate construction all make this a collector's piece and a fantastic investment," said James Stratton, Head of Bonhams Clock Department.

"The best of the best will continue to demand a premium price - which has proven to be the story of this recession."

The estimate of £100,000-150,000 paid tribute to the lot's historical value; but Bonhams were unprepared for the levels of interest it attracted.

"Without doubt, had this clock been known to the great horological historians of the past, it would have featured in many of the standard reference works and exhibitions as a wonderful, largely untouched, example of the formative years of the English pendulum clock," said Mr Stratton.

One of the few architectural long-case clocks that survive by Ahasuerus Fromanteel, this is unique in having a silver mounted dial and what appears to be the original bell.

The long clock wasn't the only to command a stellar price; also in the sale, a fine and rare early 18th century ebony veneered, bracket clock went for close to £300,000.


Image: Bonhams

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