A late 17th Century English verge with silver champleve dial in silver pair cases. Deep full plate fire gilt movement with Egyptian pillars. Fusee and chain with worm and wheel barrel setup between the plates. Pierced and engraved winged cock with pierced and engraved foot. Plain steel balance, silver regulator disc. Signed silver champleve dial, Roman and Arabic numerals, fine gilt beetle and poker hands. Silver pair cases, the inner with split bezel and maker's mark “IW”. Plain silver outer case with seven joint square hinge.
A fine example which is unusually signed for the maker of the case. The “IW” incuse mark is on the 1682 plate and was registered again by John Willoughby as a Britannia silver mark in 1697. He was born circa 1665 and apprenticed to Thomas Howe, a watch case maker, 29th September 1679 for seven years. Free of the Clockmakers Company 1686. In 1695 he was assessed at St. Sepulchre Parish with his wife Mary, four children, John, Benjamin, Grace, and Mary, together with three servants. His son, also John was apprenticed to him 3rd July 1704. He is also listed in Baillies as a watchmaker, Free of the Clockmakers Company 1686 – 1710. It is very unusual to find a watch signed by the maker of the case as even at this early date manufacture was split into many specialised trades. The watch bears no serial number which indicates he signed few watches