Ormolu and lapis lazuli mantel clock by Ledure and Hémon

By Hémon, Claude (active 1770-1820) | Ledure, Pierre-Victor (French, 1783-c.1840)


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The clock is crafted from lapis lazuli (a deep blue gemstone) and is decorated with ormolu (gilt bronze) mounts in the Neoclassical style. The clock features a stepped wide rectangular lapis base which stands on four ormolu winged paw feet. The base is mounted with an ormolu foliate band and a motif, which is composed of three wreaths and a pair of swords. The base is topped by a rectangular lapis pedestal case, the bottom and top of which are decorated with ormolu bands. At its centre, there is a circular ormolu dial with black Roman Numerals and the makers’ signatures, ‘Ledure Bronzier/ Hémon Hr’. The dial is displayed behind a glass lens which is set within an ormolu bezel. A full-length ormolu figure of a Roman woman stands to the left of the case. The woman stands and writes on a scroll which is placed on the top of the clock case. The clock’s movement is signed ‘Hemon Paris’.

This majestic mantel clock is the work of the master bronzier Pierre-Victor Ledure and the important 19th-Century Parisian clockmaker, Claude Hémon. Ledure received many important commissions from the aristocracy during his lifetime and his work can be found in major private and public art collections, including the Royal Pavilion in Brighton and the British Embassy in Paris. Hémon was known to have made movements for Pierre-Philippe Thomire (1751-1843), perhaps the most prominent bronzier of the French Empire period, and one of his clocks can be found in the British Royal Collection, in the Royal Dining Room of the Palace of Holyroodhouse in Edinburgh. These two exceptional makers collaborated to produce several unique clocks, such as this one.


Artist / Maker
By Hémon, Claude (active 1770-1820), Ledure, Pierre-Victor (French, 1783-c.1840)
Country of Origin
Date of Manufacture
c. 1820
Early 19th Century
Neoclassical, Restauration
Lapis Lazuli, Ormolu (Gilt Bronze)
Blue, Gold


66 cm / 26 inches
46 cm / 18.1 inches
22 cm / 8.7 inches


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