Close to half of the Part I catalogue was sold on the June 23 opening day at the Mayfair galleries of furniture dealer Ronald Phillips, with other sales anticipated later in the week. The exhibition, featuring all 46 pieces, will now be offered in Carter Marsh’s Winchester premises from July 3-24.
The leading individual sale completed prior to opening was the Mudge Green, one of two shagreen-cased marine timekeepers made by Thomas Mudge as he pitched for the Longitude Prize in 1777. It had been bought by Dr Taylor at Sotheby’s in 2004 for $1.24m and was priced at £1.2m.
English Golden Age sales included an exceptional Charles II table clock by Henry Jones (1642-95). Made c.1673, around the time Jones left the apprenticeship of Edward East and started to work independently at the Inner Temple, it houses a full Grande Sonnerie striking movement in a flat-topped ‘transitional’ burr walnut case of a type that would become Jones’ trademark. Described as the maker’s chef d’oeuvre and dubbed ‘the Masterpiece Jones’, it was ticketed at £255,000.
Taylor’s collection is perhaps the finest assemblage of English Golden Age and precision timekeepers in private hands. The dispersal of more than 150 clocks, watches and instruments will be conducted via a number of catalogued selling exhibitions, perhaps over two years.