A very fine Phase III Quarter repeating ebonised Table Clock by Joseph Knibb, London.

A fine, rare and well conserved Charles II quarter repeating spring table clock in a particularly small ‘phase III’ ebony and gilt metal mounted case surmounted by a foliate tied gilt metal handle to the cushion top.  The matching escutcheons to either side of the front door are typically Knibb with cherub and wings.

The brass dial and winged and cherub spandrels retain their original fire gilt.  The hands are delicately pierced and facetted.

The quarter repeating mechanism is operable from either side of the case and the eight-day duration movement includes a verge escapement and a finely engraved backplate in the early style of tulips and foliage and the maker’s signature signed in a crescent.  Unusually, this clock stands only 11 ½ inches high (29 cm), excluding handle.

A very fine clock by this master of English clock making.

Serviced and guaranteed for 3 years.


  • Currently – Private collection, UK
  • Previously – Private collection, France
  • Previously – Purchased Carter & Wright


Comparative Literature:

  • The Knibb Family Clockmakers by R. A. Lee


Height: 11 ½” or 29cm (Excluding handle)


CIRCA. 1685


*This clock is delivered and set up for free within the UK. We regularly ship clocks all over the world with our approved and well-established Antiques and Fine Art Packers & Shippers. Please ask for a quote should you require this service.


Joseph Knibb – B.1640 – D.1711

Joseph Knibb was one of the most celebrated clockmakers of his day and was highly admired by Charles II for whom he made several fine clocks.

Joseph was apprentice to his cousin Samuel Knibb in 1655 at Newport Pagnell and after his seven year apprenticeship he then moved to Oxford in 1662, whilst Samuel moved to London the same year. It was far from an easy move, when he arrived in the city he was thought of as a foreigner by the freeman traders of the city who objected to his presence. It is thought that he traded without permission until upon payment of a fine in 1668, he was then free to carry out his business without hinderance. It was at this time he was most interested in the development of the anchor escapement and seconds pendulum for timekeeping accuracy.

In 1670 he moved to London, this could have been because of his accurate clocks or it could possibly be to do with Samuels death. Either way, immediately after setting up business in the city he was granted the freedom of the Clockmakers’ Company. He was quick to become established in London with a very distinctive style along with several notable inventions. Quite apart from producing work of consistent high quality, Joseph was imaginative, inventive and had an excellent eye for proportion. He had many apprentices and was elected as Steward of the Clockmakers’ Company in August 1984 and then Assistant in 1689.

By the time he retired in 1697 his business is believed to have made over four hundred clocks, proving that he was an illustrious businessman during his time in London. He retired to Hanslop where he still made clocks, only not on such a large scale. He died in December 1711.

Many collectors aspire to “one-day own a Knibb”. It is also an ideal investment that you can really appreciate simultaneously.

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