Alluring Empire chariot clock “Eros and Psyche” drawn by butterflies

Rare Empire chariot clock “Eros and Psyche” drawn by butterflies

Very refined and rare Empire period chariot clock symbolizing Eros and Psyche on a chariot drawn by butterflies. The clock has been executed in finely chiseled mercury gilded bronze. The symbolism of the butterfly and Psyche is inextricably linked to elevating the soul. Two butterflies represent prosperity in friendship and marriage. Eros is steering the butterfly drawn carriage on the clouds. And a young woman, holding a sheep in her lap, is sitting in it. She is Psyche, whom he has just kidnapped. She will later become his rightful wife. After that the gods will finally accept her into the divine heavens. The lamb is not part of the mythology, it is traditionally a sign of innocence.

The scene of Eros and Psyche in a chariot is set on top of a case supported by two elegant sphinxes. This case forms the second layer of the three layer design. The case, which encompasses the clockwork, has decorations of flying angels with bow and trumpet. On the side we see lyres. The movement has an enamel dial with Roman numerals and Breguet style hands.

Finally, all of this is standing on top of a base which forms the third layer of this Empire clock. It has decorations of a quiver with arrows, a torch with a flame and hearts. All of these are typical symbols of Eros. The arrows he shoots to make people fall in love and the fire that warms and ignites the heart.

This Empire chariot clock “Eros and Psyche” with it’s sublimely chiseled details has an exceptional quality of mercury gilding. The very elegant design shows magnificent sculpting and carving.

Details of this Empire chariot clock “Eros and Psyche”

The eight-days going movement has a wire suspension pendulum. It has a twin-barrel movement with count wheel strike on a bell. It strikes the hour and half hour on it’s bell. The clock is in a excellent and perfect working condition. Also, it has recently been cleaned and serviced by a professional clock maker. The clock comes complete with its pendulum, key and bell.

France, Empire period circa 1810.

Dimensions: 44 cm high, 36 cm wide and 14 cm deep.
Weight: 10.1 kg.


  • French Bronze Clocks, Elke Niehüser, p.126 #205, #206 & p.242 #934

See more Empire Clocks in our gallery.

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