Raingo Frères Mantel Clock, ca. 1870
Well, I brought this clock that's been in my family as long as I can remember. My mother purchased it in the early '40s when she was very young, probably 20 years old. And saw it in an antique store window, and loved it, made a deal with the owner of the store, and went back home to get a wagon. Took her nephew with her, and he helped her pull it home on the wagon.
And what did she pay for it?
She paid $200 for it, which was a lot for her at that time.
Yeah, that's a lot of money.
My dad was in the service, and she was working in a chain store, I think, at the time.
But she made some kind of arrangement so she could pay a little at a time.
Well, it's a classical French mantel clock. It's signed by the maker, Raingo Freres, down in that banner on the very nicely decorated porcelain dial. By classical, I mean it's depicting classical mythology. You have the putto seated on a variegated marble stand with gilt brass decoration. There's gilt leafage here, there's swags and drapery. The putto itself, all of this is pointing to a culture and a classical appreciation of fine art. A putto is the singular of putti. They were usually messengers of good news. It's cast brass of very high quality, finished with files and fine abrasive materials to give it that very nice luster that we're looking at here. Now, let's talk about the clock. Raingo Freres, Raingo being the last name, Freres meaning "brothers." And they started the House of Raingo, as it was known, in Paris in 1813. And they were active until about 1870. This clock falls in the later period of their manufacture. So it's 1860-ish, 1870. It has a very high quality French movement. It strikes the hours and the half-hour, beautiful gilt decorated hands, which just show the fine workmanship and skill of the Raingo firm. It obviously doesn't have a pendulum because there's nothing hanging down here.
So it has a balance wheel escapement. I think today at auction, it would not be an exaggeration to say this could bring about $9,000.
It's a very fine, beautiful clock.
Well, thank you.
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