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   Josephine Clock


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About the Clock Maker....

Named Jean Francois de Belle, the maker of the Empress Josephine clock lived in Paris. He was said to be moody and a genius. He did not participate in clock making guilds of his time, but he still managed to make customers out of the most exclusive families in Europe.

Because he had supplied numerous royality with clocks, he was almost executed during the Reign of Terror after the fall of the French monarchy. He lived in seclusion, but finally emerged after the rise of Napoleon.

In 1805, Jean was called to Napoleon's palace after the Emperor returned from a visit to his brother in Spain where other works of Jean were on display. They had caught Napoleon's eye, and Jean soon had a commission from the Emperor for a clock to be a gift for Empress Josephine.

It took approximately a year to complete, but Josephine kept the clock as a main decoration in her private suite.

This information was found in an undated article from The Denver Post by George Mace Martin. It is probably dated around 1951.

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Carla Schutte, Mike Lipinski, Susan Silverman
Gail Watson, Tammy Payton
March 2000