A French pocketwatch-style compass sundial in gold, the compass rose in white enamel, with eight points and a magnetic variation scale. The white enamel dial plate is mounted above, supported by three gold struts. It indicates VI – XII and I -VI, divided to 30 minutes, with gold gnomon. Signed ‘Armand, Paris’. The case back has the appearance of amethyst guilloche enamel but close inspection suggests it is an amethyst glass cover over an engraved gold back.
Armand was appreticed to Canivet in 1747. His woking dates are 1755-1780. We know of one other instrument by Armand, a near identical dial in the National Maritime Museum, but that example is in gilt copper rather than gold.
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Ganymede Antiques, established in 1992, is based in Muswell Hill, London, U.K. We specialise in scientific instruments from the 18th and early 19th centuries, with particular interest in sundials, and drawing and calculating instruments. We are always keen to buy interesting instruments, and entire collections. We exhibit at the twice yearly International Antique Scientific Instrument Fair in London. Keith Petts can be contacted at email@example.com