A clock by Jacob Degen

by Paul Schulman
(Moraga, CA. U.S.A.)

I have acquired a small wall clock with an amazing movement inside. The back plate of the movement has beautifully engraved on it "Jacob Degen in Wein".

The clock has a balance wheel with a magnificently pierced gilded balance cock. Looking up Jacob Degen I find that he is a Swiss watch and clockmaker who lived in Vienna born in the late 1760s and died in 1849. He is famous for his invention in 1809 of the "ornithopter" -- an ill-conceived flying machine with which he toured Europe.

I could find nothing about him, however, as a clockmaker. When was he active in making clocks? What was his company? Are his movements rare, of good quality?

Anything on Degen as a clockmaker would be greatly helpful


Paul Schulman

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