Precision Table Regulator with perpetual calendar, circa 1850, signed on the dial and on the rear movement plate C. DETOUCHE, FSEUR DE L’EMPEREUR, RUE ST MARTIN 228 & 230, PARIS.
The base and the top of the case in white marble, the four sides with bevelled glass allowing for a good view of the complete dial and movement through the sides and rear. Two doors, front and rear, allow for easy access to all controls and parts.
The top dial with external ring for hour Roman numerals and outer division for minutes and seconds, the centre with the visible Brocot cornaline half-roller pallets, above the signature. Three concentric blued steel hands for the hours, minutes and center-sweeping half-seconds, following the beat of the pendulum.
The lower dial with the full perpetual calendar showing the months, the days of the week, the day of the month and the moonphases. The day of the month automatically corrects for the shorter months and thus takes the correct action on 28-, 29- (for leap years), 30-, or 31-days months.
Both movements of remarkable quality, as expected of any work coming from Constantin Detouche’s workshop, and the perpetual calendar is of his own design, not wanting to pay for the Brocot perpetual calendar patents. Some bridges carry the initilas “GH” stamped on the reverse, possibly the mark of the clockmaker who made the calendar. Steel suspension adjustable from the front, the hands very unusually being set through a handle from the rear, the calendar settings ditto, the front door thus never needs opening. Compensated temperature Ellicott – type pendulum. Two-weeks autonomy.
19½ʺ (50cm) , W. 12½ʺ (32cm), D. 9½ʺ (24cm)
Constantin Louis Detouche
(1810-1889) was an extraordinarily gifted and prolific clockmaker, and he designed and produced numerous complicated clocks. His shop and workshop were set up in the Rue Saint-Martin in Paris, and he is recognized as one of the great 19th C. French clockmakers.
Tardy, Dictionnaire des horlogers français, Paris, 1972 ; Derek Roberts, Continental and American Skeleton Clocks, Schiffer, 1989.