Alpheus and Arethusa

1820 – 1830

The Museum of Arts and Crafts in Zagreb

The Museum of Arts and Crafts in Zagreb

Movement with circular plates. Spring driven with anchor escapement and free rear pendulum as regulator. Striking work with counting plate. Strikes full hours and half hours on a bell.
The sculptured figure scene on the case can be interpreted as showing the river god Alpheus clasping the nymph Artheusa around the waist, as she pours water over him.
The quality of decoration of the base is not on the level of the sculpture; the shape is considerably rougher and despite the use of scrolling leaf motifs, it is completely static.
The clock is not signed but it can be dated to 1820s on the basis of style. The subject and manner in which the figures are shown are characteristic of the Empire period, and the choice of a love scene presages the Romanticism of the twenties. The basis is much higher than on earlier clocks. The dial made of silvered brass instead of enamel (or a combination of enamel and gilt brass) is not usual in the first two decades of the 19th century.

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  • Title: Alpheus and Arethusa
  • Date: 1820 – 1830
  • Date Created: 1820 – 1830
  • Location Created: France, Paris (?)
  • Physical Dimensions: 65.5 cm x 52 cm x 17 cm
  • Type: clock
  • Contributor: Museum of Arts and Crafts, Zagreb
  • Rights: Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike (CC BY-NC-SA)
  • External Link: http://athena.muo.hr/?object=list&find=019869
  • Medium: brass, bronze