TURMUHR Hans Gruber 1571 Germany

Renaissance clocks


Signed: Hans Gruber
Dated: 1571

Movement with verge escapement and balance, with micrometric regulator. The hour striking on count wheel strikes the hours on a large bell, the quarter striking strikes the quarters on a smaller bell. The going, hour striking and quarter striking trains are driven by a barrel, all with chain fusee. The clock has alarm, also driven by a barrel and decorated with a picture of the Jacob’s ladder.

The large gilt brass dial has a chaptering with roman hour numerals and a ring with touch pieces and the inner ring with Arabic hour numerals 13 – 24. In the centre of the dial-plate the brass fire gilt alarm disc with engraved Arabic numerals and engraved centre. The hour hand is made of steel. The smaller gilt brass dial indicates the quarter and has roman numerals, a steel hand and touch pieces.

The fire-gilt case is curly engraved and has columns on the corners. To get to the movement, both side panels including the columns, can be removed. The inside of the right panel has a sun dial and a compass, and the stamped signature Hans Gruber 1571 with its initials. This signature is also stamped in the basement of the case, below the dials. On the inside of the left panel an engraved picture of the Jacob’s ladder and on the outside the initials of the engraver ICH SC CK. In each panel is a hole for regulating the striking. On one side the hour striking and on the other side the quarter striking. The dial on the back side of the case has Arabic numerals, touch pieces and a steel hand and indicates the striking hours. On top the two bells and in front of the bells a small switch for the alarm.

Duration 1 day

Height 25 cm.
Breadth 15 cm.
Depth 15 cm.

*Price on request

Jürgen Abeler, Meister der Uhrmacherkunst, p. 227.
Giuseppe Brusa , La Mesura del Tempo, p. 412.

Hans Gruber
Hans Gruber, Nürnberg, was born in 1530, became Master in 1552 and died in 1597.

This clock is made on the occasion of the division of the lands of Schwarzburg. In 1571, the four sons of Count Günther XL ( also known as “Günther with the heavy jaw” and Günther the Rich) of Schwarzburg-Blankenberg(1499-1552), divided amongst themselves, after many years of bitter quarreling over their inheritance, the lands their father had united. One of the four sons, Count Wilhelm I (1534-1590), commissioned this clock to commemorate the event. Wilhelm had gained the family lands in Frankenhausen, including the castle, which is today a museum,. The clock bears the Schwarzburger coat of arms and the coat of arms of Wilhelm’s wife Elisabeth von Schlick in Passaun ( 1522-1590), the Schwarzburgs were one of the most oldest noble families of Thuringia until the death of the last family member in 1971.

Jacob’s ladder
Genesis ( 28:11-19)
Jacob laid down to sleep on the ground while he was travelling and dreamed of a vision in which a ladder stretched from the Erath to Heaven, with angels ascending and descending the ladder, with God above. In the dream God spoke to Jacob and said: “The land in which you lie I will give to you and to your descendents.”

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