Verge watch with fusee. French, mid 18th century.
© Science Museum / Science & Society Picture Library
Watch with verge escapement in an engine turned enamelled gold hunter case decorated with split pearls. The central panel of the case is painted with the scene of a cherub and a dog playing together. As with most early watches, the timekeeping is controlled by a verge escapement. Only the wealthy could afford pocket watches in the 18th century. They were the most intricate mechanical devices made for sale and represented the highest quality of mechanical work then performed.