Art/ Collection/ Art Object
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Watch

Maker:
Watchmaker: Edward East (British, 1602–1697)
Date:
ca. 1640
Culture:
British, London
Medium:
Outer and inner cases: silver, with a plain silver dial; Movement: gilded brass, silver, and steel, partly blued
Dimensions:
1-3/4 x 1-1/2 in. (4.4 x 3.8 cm)
Classification:
Horology
Credit Line:
Gift of J. Pierpont Morgan, 1917
Accession Number:
17.190.1468a, b
On view at The Met Fifth Avenue in Gallery 517
Trained as a goldsmith, Edward East was a founding member of the London Clockmakers' Company in 1631. A successful maker of both clocks and watches throughout the Commonwealth period, he remained a royalist and was appointed clockmaker in 1660 to the newly restored King Charles II (1630–1685). The plain, almost egg-shaped watch known as a Puritan watch is commonly thought to have been developed in England in reaction to the elaborately decorated watchcases of the earlier seventeenth century. Watches of the same variety, however, are known to have been made in the Dutch cities of Haarlem and The Hague from about 1625. This elegant example has a worm-and-wheel set-up for the mainspring, a pinned-on cock with a beautifully executed openwork floral design, elegant pillars of a type known as Egyptian, and a gut fusee. It has a duration of sixteen hours.

[Clare Vincent, 2009]
Signature: Engraved on the back plate of the movement: Eduardus East/Londini
Frederick George Hilton Price , London ; J. Pierpont Morgan , London and New York (until 1917; to MMA)
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