Horace Walpole's Strawberry Hill Collection
title 02
Browse By Category: Search Results
Find out more about the individual record details on this page.
individual record image


This item is located in the Library.

Clock and bracket
A clock of silver gilt

Strawberry Hill ID: sh-000144
16th century (clock); mid-18th century (bracket)
Unknown Creator

Decorative Object
The clock gilt metal, the two weights gilt copper over lead: the dial with a silvered chapter; bracket carved and gilt pear wood set with silver-gilt heads
25.5 cm x 10.9cm x 10.7cm (clock); 27.6cm x 17.8 cm x 18.2cm (bracket)
One of the weights is engraved: DIEU ET MON DROIT, the initials H and A with lovers' knots and inscription THE MOST HAPPYE+.
The Royal Collection, RCIN30018.

Strawberry Hill History

Location: Library

1774 Description: A clock of silver gilt, richly chased, engraved, and ornamented with fleurs de lys, little heads, &c. on the top sits a lion holding the arms of England, which are also on the sides. This was a present from Henry 8th. to Anne Boleyn; and since, from the lady Elizabeth Germaine to Mr. Walpole. On the weights are the initial letters of Henry and Anne, within true lovers knots; at top, Dieu et mon droit; at bottom, The most happy.--- One of the weights, agreeably to the indelicacy of that monarch's galantry, is in a shape very conformable to the last motto. The pedestal is adorned with small heads of bronze gilt of the age of Henry 8th. but which did not belong to the clock. (47)

1784 Description: Text same as 1774 Description (35)

Sale Text: A singularly interesting and very rare specimen of mechanism of the early time, in a fine state of preservation, the celebrated clock of silver gilt, presented by Henry VIII. to his Queen, Anne Boleyn, on their Marriage; it is richly chased, engraved and ornamented with fleurs de lys, miniature heads, &c., on the top sits a Lion bearing the arms of England, which are also on the sides, on the weights are the initial letters of Henry and Anne with true lover's knots, one bears the inscription "The most happye," the other the royal motto, also the curve shaped and carved bracket for same, studded with medallions in gold. This bijou was the gift of Lady Elizabeth Germaine to Horace Walpole.

Object History

Provenance: By 1760, Lady Elizabeth Germaine gave to Horace Walpole; 1842, Strawberry Hill Sale, day 17, lot 48, bt [Sequier for] Her Majesty, Queen Victoria, £110.5.0; Royal Library, Windsor, Collection of H.M. The Queen.

Exhibition History: "A Royal Miscellany from the Royal Library." The Queen’s Gallery, Buckingham Palace. London, England. 1990. No. 213.
"Horace Walpole's Strawberry Hill," Yale Center for British, Art 15 October 2009 - 3 January 2010; Victoria and Albert Museum 5 March 2010 - 4 July 2010,

Bibliography: HW Corres 2:334n, 9:304, 29:39
OHG 99
Cedric Jagger, Royal Clocks: the British Monarchy and its Timekeepers, 1300-1900 (London: R. Hale, 1983), 232-9.
Clive Wainwright, The Romantic Interior. The British Collector at Home 1750-1850 (New Haven and London: Yale University Press, 1989), 92.
Delia Millar, "Family Connections," Country Life 8 (March 1990), 108-111.
David Starkey, Henry VIII: A European Court in England (New York: Cross River Press, 1991), XI.17.