Thomas Knifton's Balance Wheel Verge Lantern Clock: A 17th Century Horological Masterpiece

The balance wheel verge lantern clock crafted by Thomas Knifton is an enduring symbol of the horological artistry of the 17th century. Thomas Knifton was one of the eminent clockmakers of his time, based in the heart of London, and his lantern clocks are a testament to his exceptional craftsmanship and mechanical prowess.

A lantern clock, named due to its similarity to a lantern's shape, was a popular type of household clock during the 17th century. However, Knifton's balance wheel verge lantern clock stands out as a unique blend of design and innovation. It incorporated a balance wheel and a verge escapement, a mechanism that was the heart of virtually all watches before the pendulum's invention.

Crafted predominantly from brass and iron, Knifton's lantern clocks are aesthetically striking. The timepiece showcases a distinct cage-like structure that encloses the gears and face of the clock. The dial often features beautifully engraved designs or symbols, with Roman numerals signifying the hours. The maker's name, "Thomas Knifton", and the location of his workshop, "Lothbury, London", would typically be inscribed on the clock.

It is important to note that Knifton's balance wheel verge lantern clocks are rare historical artifacts, making them highly sought after by collectors and museums. These clocks are not just functional timepieces, but they also provide a glimpse into the technological and artistic accomplishments of the 17th century. Each clock stands as a testament to Knifton's extraordinary skill and the horological traditions of the period.
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