Although the oldest clock is already thousands of years old in the form of a water clock or sundial, we saw a rapid development of clocks in the last 800 years.
We have identified 8 crucial developments since the first mechanical tower clock.
1275 – The mechanical tower clock
The first mechanical clock was made in 1275 and was made in Italy.
1656 – Pendulum
The Dutch scientist Christiaan Huygens invented the pendulum. This had a huge impact as the pendulum was a crucial component of many clocks that were built from that moment onward. He described his research in various works.
1671 – Anchor escapement
In hindsight a logical follow-up from the breakthrough by Huygens is the anchor escapement design. This design works together with the pendulum. In every swing the anchor escapement causes the pendulum to get a little push. Besides that it also helps the clock’s hand to move.
1674 – Balance spring
The third big discovery in 2 decades is again by Huygens, who was an important pioneer in the world of clocks in the 17th century. He invented the balance spring. The balance spring helps the balance wheel to oscillate with a resonant frequency. You can find more information on how a balance spring works on Wikipedia.
1761 – Chronometer
It took almost a century before the next invention moves the world of clock making. In 1761 John Harrison invented the H1 ships chronometer. As people were traveling a lot by ships, it was important to have an accurate idea of the time at various locations. This breakthrough invention helped overcome that challenge. An overview of available antique chronometers for sale can be found online.
1840 – Electric clock
At the end of the industrial era Alexander Bain invented and patented the first electric clock. In the first patended design the pendulum is kept moving forward by electromagnetic pulses. Antique electric clocks can also be found in our assortment.
1929 – Quartz Clock
Getting closer to modern clocks, the design of the quartz clock by W.A. Morison. This invention is used in most timekeepers of the modern era.
1948 – Atomic Clock
The atomic clock is the most precise timekeeper mankind knows and is used for various standards.
If you are looking for a clock that will have a serious impact on the atmosphere of your living room or office it’s an antique longcase clock. The sheer size of these clocks make them very present anywhere they are positioned.
Longcase clocks are weight driven, where the weights are located in the tall floor-standing case. This is also the reason an alternate name for longcase clock is antique tall clock. It is said that the song “My grandfather’s clock” composed by Henry Clay Work is the reason the third name for these clocks is antique grandfather clocks.
The original dial was made of brass with a silvered chapter ring. In later days brass was replaced by painted wood. Besides the dial, ost of the materials of the longcase clocks are made of oak, walnut or mahogany. Because the base of the clock is so tall, there is a lot of room for decorations and customisation. This leads to a wide variety of these tall clocks.
Originally many longcase clocks were built in England from makers such as Knibb, Tompion and Fromanteel. But production got increased significantly when the Dutch started producing them as well in the 18th century.
Besides its size and beauty these clocks also have a high life expectancy when taken care of properly and they are often passed from generation to generation.
Are you looking for a longcase clock? Make sure you view our online category or come to our store in Nedlands, WA, Australia. If you can’t find what you are looking for, you can also send us an e-mail or give us a call as we also scout for specific clocks on request.
Are you in the market of buying
an antique clock? It may be your first antique clock and you are very excited
and a bit overwhelmed by all the different clocks that are available. Whether
you are buying an antique clock as an investment or because it fits your house
perfectly, there are a few questions you can ask yourself before you purchase an
What kind of clock do I want?
There are various types of clocks
in terms of size and how you can place them in your home, in case you want to
have it in your home. If you want a smaller clock that you can place on a shelf
or cabinet an antique
mantel clock can suit
your needs. Or closely related a bracket clock.
If you are looking for a clock to
be hung on the wall the most well known clock – the antique
wall clock– is your
best solution or the smaller bracket clock could work out for you as well.
Last but not least there is a
very impressive and large tall standing antique
grandfather clock. This clock
is a real eye catcher in your living room.
Do I want a striking clock or a
Ding, Dong, Ding Dong… The
sound of a striking clock is loved by many. However not everyone enjoys the
sound. Either they prefer no sound at all, or there is already clock making
sound and you don’t want multiple antique clocks making sounds.
How often and which sound?
When you do prefer your clock to
make a sound, there are a few varieties as well. Some clocks strike once an
hour or every 30 minutes. Other strike every quarter (called a Westminster
strike). It’s not just the frequency
however, there are some clocks that play melodies instead of classic sounds. A
very general rule of thumb is if the dial has one hole it’s a silent clock, two
holes it strikes every 30 minutes and with three holes it’s a Westminster
What is the maximum I would like
Antique clocks start at a few
hundred dollars for a clock. If you are looking at special collector’s items
then of course the price can go up significantly. With the Rothschild Faberge
Egg selling for €13.5 million in 2007.
wall clocks are the perfect aesthetic addition to your living room. The word
antique translates to well-aged with the items being over a century old.
Presently, the ageing sneaks us into the Victorian era, where uniquely designed
wall clocks were the order of the day.
from the good looks of the wall clocks, their durability is excellent. If you
set your mind on wall clocks, there are several things you need to keep in mind
to get an authentic piece. Below are key points to look at when getting these
Where to buy antique wall clocks?
Being antique usually results in not many of their type are widely available in good condition. At Dutch Antique Time Pieces we are specialised in finding antique wall clocks in excellent conditions. Every piece has a story to tell. We are always looking at how unique the clock is, the condition of the product and a wide variety of construction dates. We can even find clocks on demand if you are looking for something very specific. So please go through our antique wall clock assortment or contact us if you are looking for a specific item.
antique wall clocks come in various designs and sizes to meet your needs. There
are the wooden types made entirely of high-quality polished hardwood that boost
their durability. They are excellent if you want a nostalgic feeling ambience
in your house and the slick finishing adds a touch of sophistication to your
are also metal wall clocks; some even made entirely out of metal while others
feature wooden parts. They are durable, and due to their age, they feature a
striking rustic appearance. Additionally there are steampunk-like clocks with
Victorian-era influences in the design and feature exposed gears.
face is also essential and feature stack colours such as grey, faded cream or
pearl white. The digits are large, mostly Hindu/Arabic or Roman numerals. There
might be minor decorations punctuating them, and you may opt for them if the
design is appealing to you.
from the different designs featured, there are also different styles. They
range from the traditional mid-size wall clock, which most of the time assumes
a circular configuration. The regulator clocks are another nostalgia-inducing
wall art that features a pendulum.
looking at the pendulum, you also have the cuckoo clock that is also an
excellent antique clock that is very popular.
At Dutch Antique Time Pieces we also have decades of experience repairing clocks.
Repairing a clock is delicate work that requires deep
understanding of the various components of a clock. Because there are many
different clocks and mechanisms, this trade is not suitable for just anyone. It
takes someone with a great appreciation of clocks, patience and precision. A
clock has to be repaired in a way that it was originally constructed. If it is
repaired the wrong way it can actually causes problems for the clock and devalue
If you have a clock that needs repairing, make
sure you choose the right person to do the job for you. The first thing to look
at is the qualification of the clockmaker. Secondly experience comes into play
as with many expert trades. Last but not least, most clockmakers in Australia
will be a member of the Clock & Watchmakers Australia.
With nearly 30 years of experience Jot of Dutch Antiques is
a well-known clockmaker in Perth and surroundings in the Antique Clock market.
Is my antique clock
Do notice that antique clocks are not as precise as modern
clocks. It’s quite common for antique clocks to deviate a few minutes every
week. This is one of the characteristics of antique clocks, your clock is not
broken. If you are still in doubt, contact us.
The history of the clock can go back many thousand of years.
The origin of the first clock is debatable as the sun was used to create
A major breakthrough however was the first mechanical tower
clock, which was made in Italy in 1275.
It took over nearly 4 more centuries before the second significant invention took place. In 1656 Christiaan Huygens invented the pendulum which changed the clocks as we know them today. He didn’t just invent the pendulum, but he was also the first to derive the formula for the period of the pendulum. His researched was combined and published in 1673 in his work “Horologium Oscillatorium sive de motu pendulorum”.
The third invention followed Huygens’ discovery quite
quickly. Only 15 years later Robert Hooke or William Clement came up with the
anchor escapement. The design of the escapement looks simple, but the detail is
in the simplicity. This invention works well together with the pendulum as it
maintains the swing of the pendulum giving it a push each swing. The wheels of
the escapement also help the clock’s hand to move forward.
An overview of antique
clocks can be found in our online shop or in our store located in
Perth, Western Australia.
A piece of history with a story. This Winterhalter &
Hoffmeier mantle clock (ca 1880) is loved by collectors. The origin of the
company goes back all the way to 1810 when Thomas Winterhalter founded his
firm. He moved in with the family Friedenweiler a few years later. But it
wasn’t until the 1850’s when the company was called Winterhalder &
Hoffmeier when Johannas Hoffmeier got involved. Since then the company has had
several minor name changes until it eventually had to close its doors due to
problems related to the First World War.
This beautiful clock has an oak case and 8 day movement. This clock is of a high quality standard as it is made in the Black Forest. The oak case is beautifully combined with the silver engraved dial.
A detail of clocks
that is not very often discussed are clock hands. Interestingly enough however,
as the clock hands is the most crucial visual part of the clock. Even without a
clock face you could still get an idea of what time it is by looking at the
Throughout the years clock designers have
been very creative in the different clock hands designs they came up with.
When we look at vintage clocks such as the
industrial slave clocks, we see a very simple straightforward design that matches
the overall look of the clock.
Hand clocks that do not have a solid design
are often open at the tip of the hand where the hand widens.
Although sometimes the entire hand has a
comprehensive design, such as this Swedish Cartel Clock
In some cases the small and large clock
hand have different designs, there is truly no limit to the designs possible.
The only convention that has been introduced is that the small hand depicts the
hours and the large hand tells you the minutes.