Description & Technical information

This rare barometer belongs to a small group of three known examples by the prolific 18th century English instrument maker to George III. His son, also called George Adams, took over the business after his father’s death in 1772.  Like the other two known examples, it has a silvered dial with matted brass centre applied with a silvered plaque signed: ‘G Adams, No. 60 Fleet Street, LONDON / Instrut. Maker to His MAJESTY’.  The barometer has a glazed panel above the dial, as on one of the other two examples, which contains a chart on paper headed ‘The General State of the Weather’. The third barometer of this group has a thermometer in this space.

Date:  1765
Period:  George III
Origin:  English
Medium: Mahogany
Dimensions: 105.5 x 29 x 12 cm (41¹/₂ x 11³/₈ x 4³/₄ inches)
Provenance: Miss G. M. Phillips, Pennsylvania, USA, until 1971.
Ronald Lee Ltd., London, England.
Private collection, England.
Literature: George Adams, A Treatise describing the construction and explaining the use of new celestial and terrestrial Globes, London, 1769.
Nicholas Goodison, English Barometers 1680-1860, 1969, pp. 122-5.
J. R. Millburn, ‘Horology and the Adams Family’, Antiquarian Horology, vol. XIII, no. 4, June 1982, pp. 368-76.
Christie’s, London, ‘The Samuel Messer Collection of English Furniture, Clocks and Barometers’, sale catalogue, 5 December 1991, lot 14.
Gloria Clifton, Directory of British Scientific Instrument Makers 1550–1851, 1995, p. 2.
Edward Lennox-Boyd (ed.), Masterpieces of English Furniture: The Gerstenfeld Collection, 1998, p. 243.
J. R. Millburn, Adams of Fleet Street, Makers to King George III, 2000.

Edwin Banfield, Barometers, Wheel or Banjo, 1985, p. 21, fig. 19.
Categories: Furniture