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French Barometer-Thermometer in Lacquered and Giltwood

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Signatures and inscriptions :

On the thermometer : « Con.[stru]it par Ciceri suiv.[an]t Mr de Réaumur. »

On the barometer: « Construit par Cicery faiseur de baromètres de Madame la Dauphine et de Madame la contesse de Provence en 1772, demeurant à Paris, Grande Rue du Faubourg Saint-Antoine à la Tête Noire. »



Charles Ciceri, whose name was sometimes spelled Cicery, (d. aft. 1786) was one of the most famous Parisian makers of barometers and thermometers of the second half of the eighteenth century. He also built up a large business in scientific instruments, importing particularly the works of the well-known English mechanical expert Jesse Ramsden.



In 1770 he obtained the title of « Maker of Barometers to Madame la Dauphine », in other words, of Marie-Antoinette, spouse of the by then still young heir to the crown.



This title thus became in 1774 « Maker of Barometers to the Queen ».



In 1771, Ciceri had obtained the one of « Maker of Barometers to Madame la comtesse de Provence », that is to say Marie-Josèphe de Savoie, Marie-Antoinette’s sister-in-law and spouse of the future king Louis XVIII. Having acquired other prestigious titles, he ultimately assembled them and took the one of « Maker of Barometers to the Royal Family. »



He was so well-considered that in 1780, Louis XVI purchased eight barometers of various kinds from him out of his private purse.



He also supplied several items to Benjamin Franklin during the latter’s stay in Paris.



Vetted Antique Shows/Fairs

The International Fine Art and Antique Dealers Show, New York, NY, 2008

Palm Beach | America’s International Fine Art and Antiques Fair, West Palm Beach, FL, 2007



Provenance

Charles Ciceri, Paris, France

Private Collection, France

Mary Helen McCoy Fine Antiques, Charleston,

South Carolina