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Mother of Pearl Tiny Ticker “The Peacock – Might, Wealth and Love”

Perlmutt-Zappler Der Pfau – Macht, Reichtum und Liebe


Vienna, first half of the 19th century

engraved mother of pearl, wooden body, richly engraved front with scrolling foliage, volutes, cartouches and lattice work, figural finial in the shape of an ormolu cupidriding in a chariot made of engraved mother of pearl, drawn by a carved mother of pearl-peacock, with appliqued greenish blue iridescent wings and feather train made from the shell of the Mexican green abalone
Röllchengang, kurzes Vorderpendel
5 in

Since thousands of years the peacock symbolizes rulership, beauty and might, power, pride, love, passion as well as immortality. The magnificent bird derives from India and is worshiped there as sacred animal and national bird. In the Greek-Roman mythology the peacock is associated with the goddess Juno (Hera), who provided it with the hundred Argus-eyes of the same-named giant.
In the case of this wonderful Viennese tiny ticker from the first half of the 19th century, a carved mother-of-pearl peacock serves as an elegant finial and decorative eye-catcher. The magnificently iridescent wings and tail train are made of the green-blue mother-of-pearl of the green abalone, a sea snail native to Mexico. The peacock pulls a triumphal chariot, also made of carved mother-of-pearl, which is steered by a fire-gilt putto. The case is covered with finely engraved, partly open worked mother-of-pearl. The rich ornamentation includes acanthus volutes, volute clasps, latticework and a cartouche. The movement with cylinder escapement has a short pendulum which swings in front of the dial. The rapid, fidgety (in German “zappelig”) movements of such front pendulums gave the Vienna miniature table clock type its name – „Zappler“.

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