Clocks, watches and timepieces # 1

Along with maps, globes and antiquarian books,  I have always had a particular fascination for clocks, and other timepieces.  Even in our modern world, these things remain symbols of great mystery for me – constant reminders of man’s attempt to make sense of the unknowable world and to impose some human order upon nature’s own delightfully ordered chaos. They are also invariably things of great beauty – the tiny, precise mechanisms that combine to tick away the hours of our day, carry out their cruel pursuit in exquisitely gilded and finely-wrought fashion.

My father-in-law was a particularly enthusiastic collector of clocks.  His home was filled with timepieces of every description from budget wristwatches to splendid wall clocks, mantle clocks and one particularly fine grandfather clock.  Any visit to him was accompanied by a delightful soundtrack of slightly mis-timed hourly and half-hourly chimes as the various specimens went through their own particular repertoire of bongs, rings and bell-tinkling.  When he moved to a smaller house he thoughtfully distributed a large part of his collection to his children and several of them came with us on our French adventure.   One of my particular favourites is the 19th century black marble mantel clock which now sits above the fireplace in my study………..

 

 

ALL PHOTOS © JANE MORLEY

12 Comments Add yours

  1. I am equally enthralled. I have always wanted my own grandfather clock.

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    1. Me too Sarah! That one has stayed in England, but we have one or two smaller goodies here! Hope you are well, how are the memoirs going ? 🙂

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      1. Don’t ask! We’ve only just completed on our sale so I’ve been dealing with all kinds of fascinating things like final utility bills. Such a joy. 🙂

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      2. Dear Sarah, just found your comment hidden in my comment box – wordpress is a mystery sometimes. Hope you have sorted out all the nitty gritty details now and can enjoy your new home without all the annoying bits!? Just found you properly on twitter too, how do you manage to juggle all these things o_O 😀 ! Have a super Sunday!

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  2. west517 says:

    Simply beautiful! I love the mix of black and whites in this– I think they add some nice “depth” …gorgeous!! I also LOVE old clocks, etc. ❤

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    1. Hiya west! So glad you like them and the mix of colour/b&w I love the graphic design of the faces so I think they work in black and white but the decoration is so pretty too, hence the colour! 🙂

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      1. west517 says:

        A very nice mix! Yes I was going to mention the graphics on the face of the clocks— gorgeous! I’ve been leaning toward doing more black and white for some reason– maybe I’m on a kick or something 🙂

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      2. I suspect you are on a quest for some variety as am I! 🙂 I think it makes you look at subjects differently too when you do b&w, you concentrate more on the bare bones and structures etc, interesting! 🙂

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      3. west517 says:

        I am! I’m having a rough go of it lately … not very inspired at all- unfortunately 😦 I think perhaps some of my trouble is that I don’t leave my office until after dark and it’s impossible (other than night photography) to go out and shoot… and ideas you have would be MOST welcome!! ❤

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      4. I know what you mean! I used to do my photos between 6 and 7 after shutting up shop but too dark now so not so much opportunity 😦 I do have a sort of idea though 😕 I’ll send you a twitter message tomorrow! Got to go to bed now – early start tomorrow 😦 🙂

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  3. “Constant reminders of man’s attempt to make sense of the unknowable world …” A beautifully worded thought, Jane. It resonates deeply with me. As do the photos of the exquisite clock your father-in-law passed on to you. I too would be drawn to watch the hand that tick the time on such an alluring face.
    And thank you for such touching words on my post today, Jane. They were warm and comforting. Much like every visit I make to your online home. Cheers

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    1. Thankyou too Shelley!

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