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Bonhams tick up huge prices for clock that bombs could not stop and one that had not moved for 279 years
This rare mid 19th century French 'Bubble' top grande sonnerie giant carriage clock, built in gilt bronze with a glass dome, stands 11 inches tall. Photo: Bonhams.



LONDON.- A fine robust clock that is still ticking despite a bomb strike on the house, in which it once stood, was sold in Bonhams Fine Clock sale on June 20th for £43,250. This trooper of a timekeeper has a story to tell.

The clock survived the London Blitz in WWII despite an exploding bomb striking the top of the house. Shrapnel hit the clock’s carrying case, stored in the attic, but thankfully this magnificent clock remained unscathed in a downstairs room.

This rare mid 19th century French 'Bubble' top grande sonnerie giant carriage clock, built in gilt bronze with a glass dome, stands 11 inches tall. The clock-making Berrolla family who lived in Paris’ Rue de la Tour between 1850 and 1860 made and retailed this exquisite timepiece. They showed their carriage clocks in the Paris Exposition of 1839 and exhibited carriage clocks at the London Exhibition in 1851 and 1857.

Another clock with an astonishing story is a very fine 18th century walnut longcase clock of exceptional provenance built by George Graham of London which stands an imposing 7ft 2in.This huge clock which had not moved since 1733 sold for £175, 250.

This clock has been in the same British house since new and was offered for sale by a family descendant of the original purchaser. As such, it offered a unique opportunity to acquire a clock that was last sold in 1733. “The clock was in generally excellent condition”, said James Stratton, Head of Clocks at Bonhams. The sale made a total of £861,375 for 138 lots in all.










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