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Valued for insurance purposes at £10,000 at a recent Antiques Roadshow event, in its favour was a largely original verge movement with an alarm by Josias Jolly of Paris (1608-1642), a superb engraved silver dial within a pierced foliate inner case and a pierced shagreen outer case with pinwork initials and a coronet to the reverse.

With a French museum providing the underbidding, it sold to a London dealer, believed to be buying for his own collection, at £18,000 (plus 15 per cent buyer's premium).