Black Forest shelf cuckoo clock, made by Johann Baptiste Beha, Germany, dating from c.1880. This was model 558 as listed in Beha’s 1995 catalogue.
The spectacular oak case has friezes of marquetry inlay in geometric patterns, with some lively burr walnut veneers and applied carvings. It is surmounted by a very finely carved eagle.
The wood plated 8-day fusee striking movement has the usual Beha distinguishing features – the coiled end click springs on the fusee stop work and the tapered steel piece behind the count wheel, both visible on the back plates.
The clock cuckoos on the hours and the passing of the half hour. The cuckoo is followed by a strike on the coiled gong mounted on the backboard.
We have seen other examples of the same case style with a music box in the base. It is clear that this clock has never had one fitted.
The bellows are restored and the clock has replacement hand-carved pierced bone hands.
The wooden dial has applied white Roman numerals.
Although currently working well, the movement will undergo a thorough overhaul and will be guaranteed for 3 years.
Beha Black Forest clocks are among the most highly sought after. The factory is known to have produced some very high quality clocks, some with music complications or a cuckoo and quail. Johann Baptiste Beha was the only Black Forest cuckoo clock maker to be awarded the Gold Medal of the Vienna World Trade Exhibition of 1873. The cases for Beha clocks came from case/woodcarvers shops located in different towns of the Black Forest, and hence have slight variations from carver to carver.
Height: 24inches (61 cms)
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