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About our clock

The floor clock in a case of mahogany. Made in St. Petersburg by master Vasily Foreman. The inscription on the dial "Rigulator" means that the clock has a special move system - they are very accurate. The main dial with the minute hand, inside which there are two smaller ones with the hour and second hands. An hour numbering is Roman, minutes and seconds are Arabic. The production of this clock refers to the 1840-s. They belonged to the counts Bobrinsky before the October Revolution and later to private persons. The clock got back to the palace in the mid 1960s. It has been restored by Bogoroditsk master Zakhar Petrovich Gerb.

What is a clock-regulator?

Especially accurate clocks with a complicated configuration of the pendulum are called clock-regulators. In these clocks each arrow (hour, minute and second) is located separately from each other and their statements are read in different dials. Formerly all the clocks were like these ones, then dials of astronomical clocks and marine chronometers had been arranged by their resemblance.

Due to the separate indication slow hour hand did not overlap the second one, which reading was so important to astronomers and navigators. And clock manufactories used them for adjusting and controlling new clocks. That is why they are called "regulators."

About floor clocks

The height of the first floor clock was 193 cm. It was invented by Ehezeures Fromentin, Sr. (1607-1693), solving purely technical problems – instead of a short pendulum he had to hide weights on a very long suspension from the outside actions. He made his clock case so high that it was easier to put it on the floor than hanging on the wall. In the future the height of clocks varied. Floor clocks are also called "grandfather clocks". Inventive Englishmen even have a song with the words "the grandfather clock was too large for the shelf, so for 90 years it was standing on the floor." Thus from the counting time instrument clocks turned into a piece of furniture. The decor and the form of the case of floor clocks were made in accordance with the furniture fashion of its time.

How did the clock appear in the museum?

The clock was gifted to the Museum by the Administration of Tovarko sugar factory in the mid-1960s. Before the 1917 revolution the factory was owned by the Counts Bobrinskies. It was in the palace of the Counts Bobrinskies in Bogoroditsk before the October Revolution and after the revolution at private persons' places. The last owner was the chairman of Tovarkovo settlement council I.D. Dyuzhikov.

It is interesting

July 28, 1967 (presumably in a Bogoroditsk newspaper) the article "Jack of all trades" was published. It was about Z.P. Gerb, the master of the Bogoroditsk plant and how he revived the Bobrinskies’ clock.

"The clock did not go, they were just a decoration. All the mechanism was broken and covered with oxide, some parts were missing. The clock was of old style, on the cords. It needed landing slots, polishing and grinding of all the details . Almost all the parts were rusty. They were dipped into the solution, then polished, and they began to shine. The weights were black and he had to polished them. Six weeks later thanks to Zakhar Pavlovich Gerb the clock began to run.

Zakhar Pavlovich grew up in a family of collective farm mechanic. He was fond of technics, read technical books, always contrived and made something. Before becoming a watchmaker, he was a drifter in a mine, and then built bridges. After that he worked in a joiner'sshop. For many years he worked as a carpenter in the Construction Authorities trust "Kalininugol".

About Basil Foreman

Basil Foreman is a Russian watchmaker of the XIX century, he was an exponent of All-Russian Manufactory Exhibition in 1839. V.Foreman’s wall clock-regulator is in the collection of the State Hermitage.


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