Thursday, 3 March 2016

Coach Watch Series - 2: John Grantham

John Grantham’s life and work is not well documented. The Baillie entry is simply: London. Mid 18c. g. rep. agate watch Stern coll.  Loomes records just the date 1762.  As for premises, Swallow Street, St. James, Piccadilly is recorded for 1779. 

I have found 6 other extant Grantham verges – all but one are flamboyant in appearance. 

This example was made in London around 1760 for export to China.  Movement number is 6828.  Diameter is 76mm.  It was sold in 2012 by Jones & Horan for $7,000.  It is also to be seen on the website of Stephen Bogoff.
 
Courtesy of Stephen Bogoff
  
In the period the cases of watches destined for China were very highly
decorated, with the use of multiple materials to complement the multi-functionality of the movement. This is well illustrated by another Grantham watch to be seen on Sotheby’s website.
 
This is not a Coach Watch, being just 43mm in diameter. However, it has many of the features associated with more opulent, larger format examples. Sotheby’s description should have you clicking the link in order to see such indulgence: 

A FINE AND RARE GOLD, AGATE, DIAMOND AND RUBY SET QUARTER REPEATING VERGE WATCH CIRCA 1750

Gilt full plate verge movement signed John Grantham London, pierced and engraved balance cock • white enamel dial, Roman numerals • pierced and engraved inner case, outer set with repoussé scrolls, moss agate plates on the case back and bezel, ruby and diamond-set motifs on the edges, diamond-set push button piece to the band • signed on the movement 
 
 

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