Tabletop clock, renaissance

Benedict Miller, Augsburg, Germany, 1640.

Bronze, silver, gilt.

50,5 cm x 26,5 cm x 26,5 cm.

This tabletop clock, built in Augsburg in 1640, is the most valuable timepiece found in any Finnish museum. The Renaissance clock is made of gilded bronze and has a heavily ornamented foot and a steeple-like, three-tiered, eight-sided peak. With numerous functions, it is a true testament to the clockmaker’s skill: the clock shows the time on four continents, as well as the date, weekday, sunrise and sunset times, phase of the moon, zodiac sign and the saint’s day according to the Latin calendar. One of the twelve dial plates is engraved with constellations and its three hands indicate planetary movements. The clock, which also has an alarm function, remains in its original state, with all of its functions in working condition.
The clock was gifted by Countess Anna Dorothea of Courland to Count Gustaf Mauritz Armfelt in the late eighteenth century. It remained in the Armfelt family until 1952, when Lauri Reitz purchased it for his collection.