17th Century Automata Lion Clock Roars in £117,600 at Bonhams

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LONDON.- An early 17th century gilt brass automata lion clock, which moves its eyes in time with the seconds and roars a chime every hour, sold for £117,600 at Bonhams, New Bond Street as part of its Fine Clocks and Barometers sale on Wednesday 14 July. The sale made an impressive £716,000 in total with a 74% sale rate by value. Made in France, the clock which had been estimated to sell for £70,000 to £100,000, is unique in that it features both an armillary sphere and automata combination. It would have fascinated a 17th century audience that would never have seen a lion. A top price was also paid for an early 18th century quarter repeating bracket clock movement by one of the leading clockmakers of the late 17th and early 18th century, Daniel Quare, which sold for £28,800, against and estimate of £8,000 – 12,000. Daniel Quare was an important member of the Quaker community but his beliefs often brought him into conflict w