Styria, first half of the 19th century
- brass case with engine turned bezel, original travel case with double eagle and inscription “K.K. ausschl. privilegi. Uhrenfabrik zu Frauenthal in Steiermark”
- anchor escapement, weight driven, winding up by contra weight, bendable metal pendulum rod with brass pendulum bob
- 3 in
A bendable pendulum rod is the secret to the compactness of this exceptional Austrian travel wall clock from the first half of the 19th century. The pendulum rod in the form of a flexible flat metal strip can be wound around the circular brass case, and the timepiece can then be stored in the original preserved travel case, taking up relatively little space.
A finely engine turned bezel frames the enamel dial with its Roman hour numerals, minute track and blue hands. During the Habsburg Empire of the 19th century, stylish elegance was ever desirable, even in timepieces with such reduced forms. The weight as well as the smaller counterweight, which is needed for winding, also find space in the circular case.
On the lid of the case can be seen a doubleheaded eagle and the inscription “K. K. ausschl. privilegi. Uhrenfabrik zu Frauenthal in Steiermark” (“K. K. exclusively privileged clock factory in Frauenthal in Styria”). The clock factory was probably part of the well-known brass factory in Frauental on Lassnitz River in Styria, which existed from 1714 to 1903 and whose products enjoyed an excellent reputation as ”Grätz Messing (brass)“. Johann Joseph von Prechtl, director of the Vienna Polytechnic Institute, wrote about the Frauent(h)al brass factory in 1823: ”Under the name of Grätz Messing (brass), these products are very much sought after by clockmakers and other metalworkers, and are preferred to those of many other factories.“
Equipped with this cleverly designed timepiece, the stylish 19th-century traveler could effortlessly carry a wall clock with him at all times. A wall mount on the back of the brass case allows this exclusive timepiece to be hung up in the respective travel destination. Without a doubt, this extraordinary carriage clock triggered astonishment and admiration among the hosts and even today one can only marvel at the ingenuity of the 19th century Austrian clockmakers.