Bracketclock Hynam, Horloger de la Cour à St. Petersburg Ca. 1790
Signed Hynam, Horloger de la Cour à St. Petersburg
The eight-day, spring-driven triple-fusee brass movement consists of going and striking trains with trip repeat. The going train has verge escapement and a short pendulum. The striking train indicates the hours fully on a bell, followed by one of several tunes on eight bells with eight hammers. This can be repeated at all times by pulling a chord to the side of the clock. The backplate has a border engraving and is engraved with the maker’s name: Hynam, Horloger de la Cour à St. Petersburg.
The circular enamel dial has a chapter ring with black Roman hour numerals, five-minute and minute divisions. There is a date aperture in the matted centre above the VI. The time is indicated by a pair of pierced gilt-brass hands. The maker has signed the dial Hynam, Horloger de la Cour à St. Petersburg. The dial is protected by a glazed door with a convex glass set in a gilt-brass bezel.
The mahogany case of this extremely beautiful clock has wooden scroll buttresses to the sides, embellished by rosettes. The front door is flanked by two ormolu Corinthian pillars. There are silk-backed pierced brass sound frets above and beneath the dial. The case is surmounted by five gilt brass ball finials and has a moulded arch. The clock rests on six gilt brass feet in the shape of a boar.
A boar was connected with both the sun and the moon. As a solar symbol it represented masculinity. It was also a fertility symbol and was regarded as a holy animal.
Duration 8 days
Height 32.5 cm Width 23 cm Depth 16 cm
Literature: Brian Loomes, Watchmakers & Clockmakers of the World, London, 210, p. 406.
Robert Hynam lived from 1737 to 1817 and was originally from England. He was active as a clockmaker in London from 1750. In 1767 he left for Russia where he worked at the Russian court. He was a member of the Royal Society of Arts in London, the St. Petersburg Academy of Sciences and honorary member of the Moscow University. There are clocks by Hynam in the Hermitage State Museum in St. Petersburg.