An unusual George II green japanned eight-day longcase clock with automaton, Stephen Rimbault, London, circa 1750, the five pillar rack and bell striking movement with anchor escapement regulated by seconds pendulum, the 12 inch brass break-arch dial with subsidiary seconds dial, calendar aperture and arched nameplate engraved Step'n Rimbault, London to the matted centre within applied silvered Roman numeral chapter ring with fleur-de-lys half hour markers and Arabic five minutes to outer track, with pierced steel hands and applied twin bird and urn cast spandrels to angles beneath arch centred with a silvered disc engraved with a disgruntled face incorporating 'rocking eye' automaton and flanked by dolphin cast mounts, in a green japanned Chinoiserie decorated case with generous cavetto cornice and scroll pierced fret over gilt floral trail painted glazed dial surround flanked by three-quarter columns and rectangular side windows to hood, the trunk with gilt eagle painted throat moulding over break-arch door decorated in raised polychrome and gilt with Oriental figures within a trellis garden landscape, the surround with hatch ground borders incorporating figural medallions to upper quadrants, the sides painted with birds in flight and the base decorated to match the trunk door over moulded skirt, 229cm (90ins) high
Stephen Rimbault is recorded in Baillie, G.H. 'Watchmakers & Clockmakers of the World' as working 1744-88. A portrait of him by Johan Zoffany (dating to 1864) hangs in the Tate Gallery, London where he is described as a famous clock maker of Huguenot descent, particularly noted for his 'twelve-tuned Dutchmen', clocks which played twelve tunes, with moving figures in front of decorated backgrounds. He did business in Great Andrew's Street, St Giles.
The 'rocking eye' automaton within the arch of the dial of the current lot is an unusual and particularly pleasing feature of the current lot as is the mellow, aged decoration to the case.