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An ormolu clock by Charles Cressent.

Column Furniture and works of art , Appraisal and valuation

Designer of some of the finest furniture of his time, Charles Cressent (1685 - 1768) is the inventor of clocks of great originality. On October 6th, Le Floc'h auctioneer, in Saint-Cloud, will sale one of his rare cartels in ormolu. Authenticité appraised this exceptional clock.


It is between 1735 and 1740 that Charles Cressent realizes the model of our cartel, called "Type E" by Theodore Dell. It can be recognized on the portrait of President Rieux, painted between 1739 and 1741 by Maurice Quentin de La Tour. It seems that Cressent continued its production until 1750, when the model goes to the Saint-Germain father and son. Joseph de Saint-Germain, who stamped our pendulum was received master cabinetmaker in 1750, he specialized in the manufacture of boxes clocks. Jean-Joseph de Saint-Germain (1719-1791), his son, is one of the most significant bronziers in the mid-eighteenth century, his most famous models include the rhino clock and the elephant one.


Charles Cressent specialist - appraisal - valuation


We find the stamp of Saint-Germain at least on five others clocks identical to ours including one in the Quirinal Palace in Rome. At least five other identical but unstamped copies can be attributed to Charles Cressent including in the Getty Museum, the Royal Collection of Sweden, or in the former Mentmore Collection. The study of inventories shows that this type of cartel was executed with or without console depending as chosen by the buyer. It is interesting to note that our model consoles are usually signed by Jean-Joseph de the Saint-Germain.


Estampille Saint Germain bronze ebeniste expertise



Very reasonably estimated £10,000 and £20,000, our clock should appeal interest from major collectors of antique clocks, French art amateurs, Cressent specialists but also French and internationals museums. Its selling price could fetch beyond the £40,000.



Where: hôtel des Ventes de Saint-Cloud - 1ter boulevard de la République – 92210 Saint-Cloud.
Sale: Sunday 6 October 2013 at 14h30.

Viewing: Friday 4th Octobre and Saturday 5th October 2013 from 11h to 18h and eSunday 6th from 11am to 12am.

Online catalogue:




  • ·Alexandre Pradère, Charles Cressent, Dijon 2003, p.180 à 183 et 297-298.
  • ·Gillian Wilson, European Clocks in the J. Paul GettyMuseum, 1996, p.48 à 57.
  • ·Theodore Dell, The gilt bronze cartel clocks of Charles Cressent, Burlington Magazine, April 1967, p.210 à 217