Thursday, May 24, 2012

Timely News

Around 1500, locksmiths and compass makers pooled their talents to make small, portable clocks.  Presumably they were paid by the hour for their efforts, as it would be another hundred years before the minute hand was invented.  First used by civil patrols so watchmen could make their rounds on schedule, these clocks took on the peace officers' names.  During the Renaissance, watches were encased in jeweled boxes shaped like shells, crosses, or skulls.

Cross-Watch, circa mid-1600's believed to have been invented by French masters.

 Mary Queen of Scots purportedly owned this 16th Century Skull Watch.

Because they were so costly, watches became status symbols: In the 1600's, they were worn on chains around the neck, as earrings, even as rings.

 Ring Watch, circa 1585

 16th Century Pocket Watch




And following the fashion, seventeenth-century Cardinal Richelieu was even able to corner "time on his side" by sewing seven three-quarter-inch gold watches along the outer seam of his waistcoat.

Source: Let There Be Clothes by Lynn Schnurnberger

4 comments:

  1. Wow! Those are fancy shmancy, especially the ring. You could take someone out with that thing!!! ;)

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    1. Nat - Indeed! But it sure is gorgeous.

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  2. Replies
    1. Carrie - Thanks for stopping by and posting! =)

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