Swedish Exacta Clocks

Exacta clocks were produced from 1945 at the Swedish Clock Depot's pendulum factory. In 1947 production was moved to Kopparbergsgatan in Malmo with a planned production of 15,000 pendulums per year. The works and surrounds were produced other places in Sweden, but the clocks were assembled in Malmo.

The Danish Bornholmer clock often has a delicate crown and if the head is squarish styled, a little window in each side so you can see the works moving.  
By appearance there are two main groups: the Baroque clock and the Empire clock with a smaller group of Louis 16th influenced clocks.
The Baroque Clock c. 1740-50 to about 1800. The 'koøje' or cow eye, the round window in the panel is characteristic of this time period.



There is a wonderful article online about Bornholm and the baroque clocks, written by K. Thorsen. You can have google translate change it to English.
The face is made of iron or brass with lead corner ornamentation, Roman numerals on tin with beautiful pierced brass hands and a little round tin place on top of the face, usually with a five pointed crown with the clock makers name and number or the year the works were made.

The body is in three pieces:foot, case and head, all with straight sides. One often finds a four sided molding with rounded corners on the foot. On the case's door there would be a round or four sided window. The head’s window is four sides with a half circle so that the complete face can be seen.

On the head, is a horizontal gesims but over this can be a pointed decoration.

The case was always painted sometimes with biblical motifs, sometimes with an imitation of Chinese lakarbejde.
Another variation has a bowed broken gesims and a third variation has a large bowed gesims.

The Arboe brothers were the first to make these clocks. A Dutch ship foundered off the coast of Bornholm and the brothers who were makers of spinning wheels were called in to clean the clocks. They started an industry that lasted 150 years!

The Empire Clock c.1800-1900
The face is painted white, made of iron, with black numbers and simple brass hands. As a rule, clocks with Arabic numerals are older and Roman numerals younger. The clock maker’s name or initials is sometimes found painted on the backside of the face. On the painted side of the face, the maker’s name could be replaced with the owner’s or the painter’s name. Sometimes they used fantasy names and fantasy dates.

The body is in three pieces…foot, case and head. The foot has angled sides. The body has a carved drape and the corners have column base and capitals, under the head is dental molding. The head has even sides and a round window. Around the window is a carved laurel wreath and sometimes also a row of pearls. The head is even on the top and often one finds a gallery or a crown.

This type of Bornholmer is called a ‘Han’ or He.

Then there is a type called a ‘Hun’ or She, made from about 1830, probably about 30 years younger than the He type and more rare. On the head, the sides bow out.

Another type has a completely round head, decorated on the top with a lyre and two flowering vines, all carved in wood. This type is called the Christian 8th or more popularly ‘Konen” or Women or perhaps Lady’s or Wife. This clock was made in the middle of the 1800’s and the head in silhouette resembled the national head dress the ‘nollen’. This is the rarest type, very likely only a few were made.

The rarest Bornholmer had a keyhole in middle of the case door surrounded by a garland in a horseshoe shape. Usually most Bornholmers have the keyhole on the door’s left hand side.

The Louis the 16th clocks made from 1780-1800…
The faces can be the same as the Baroque or Empire clocks but the case always has straight sides. The door is always fluted or raised fluted.

Borge says...We sell only original Mora Clocks. When you are looking for Mora clocks on the internet make sure that the clock you are interested in has the original works and pendulum together with its original case. Too often, the works have been changed out with a battery driven movement and your clock no longer is a valuable antique but merely a decorative object.

Mora Clocks are only Mora Clocks if they are all original including the works like Rolex watches are no longer Rolex watches if they have Chinese works! Mora clock production was a cottage industry, mainly in the town of Ostnor in the district of Mora in the province of Dalarna, thus the name.

The manufacture was a supplemental income for farming families who were mainly responsible for producing the mechanisms. It is thought that up to 50,000 works were made in this region.

The first clock maker was Krang Anders Anderson (1727-1799) and it is his initials AAS often seen on the clock, i.e. Anders Anders Son. The earliest known clock with his initials is from 1792. The production petered out in the mid 1800's when the competition from the US and Germany became too hard.

Cases were made in the Mora district, but the works were often sold on and cases were made in other areas, therefore the great variety. The curvy cases that simulate a woman's body were mainly created in the early 1800's. Cases are taller and thinner from North Sweden, from other areas they were broader and curvier.

Some clocks were milk painted in creamy white, gray or blue to better reflect the light, other clocks were painted in brown grain paint.

mora clock history

Translation: Are the Swedish Mora clocks similar to the Danish Bornholmers? by A.K. Kastrup (Danish clock maker)

Real Swedish Mora clocks are a farmer type clock, which were made from 1740-1840, just about the same time as the Bornholmer clock's highest popularity. The clock bodies were made with different styles, depending on the region, overall in Sweden. The works were simpler than works from Stjarnsund and were manufactured as a home industry with primitive tools. Many of the faces were marked AAS Mora (for clock maker Anders Anders-Son), which many copied. around 1840, the faces were painted white.

Questions to a clock expert in Sweden....
Question...."Would it be possible to be a farmer and at the same time produce 170 clocks?"

Answer....Yes, easily. Some of the clock makers on Bornholm made 3000. However, often these clock makers only made the clock themselves. They had the cabinet made by someone else, and a third person painted the cabinets. Anyway, it is likely that Langthjem more or less was only living by making clocks depending on the price for which he could sell them. The museum knows that some of the clock makers on Bornholm could make a clock within 2 to 3 weeks - when they didn't make everything themselves. He also told me that some of the cabinets made on Bornholm were made by reused wood, and as such, it is the painting that keeps it all together. So if one it not an expert, it is more safe to buy a clock made in Vendsyssel than one made on Bornholm.

Question...."I told him that I saw this clock in USA made by JJS in 1806 which looks like a Langthjem clock but is not... if he knew who this JJS could be?"

Answer....This clock by JJS is made in Vrejlev in Vendsyssel (northern Denmark) by a man named Jens Sørensen who was the son of the blacksmith in Vrejlev. The museum has knowledge of 4 grandfather clocks that he made between 1793 and 1805 so the 1806 clock is the newest grandfather clock known by him (but they didn't know about it until I told them). Jens also made wall clocks and there exist a couple of these. Jens Sørensen died in Vrejlev 15 September 1811. So it could be possible that Bertel Langthjem and Jens Sørensen have known each other and thus got inspiration from each other."


Found on the inside panel of this clock.
Floor Clock Mora Clock with works from Mora in Dalarna also called DalarClocks. Round face with black initials AAN Mora which is wrong. It ought to have said AAS.
He bought the works from a traveling salesman, the body was made locally. The initials on the face stand for Anders Andersson, clock maker in Mora in the 1700's. The clock case was made of pine with painted decoration. The works are an 8 day works of iron with Arabic numerals. The clock is from the beginning of the 1800's. You can read more about clocks in the book called 'Urmageri i Mora' (Clockmaking in Mora) published in 1954 and also in the magazine Urmagere i Sverige (Clockmakers in Sweden) under old times.
The floorclocks earlier owner was Anders Petter Berg in Uppsala.

And on the outside of this Swedish clock which was also repainted, is a poem that luckily was saved:

antique Swedish Mora Clock antique Swedish Mora Clock click on a photo to enlarge

Dated 1827.

The poem translates thus:

Mark your clock's running

Every tick tock it makes

Is time gone by

That never comes back

This was emailed to me by a clock customer in Virginia. She called to ask me why the Roman numerals were upside down -- then found her own answer on the internet.....
Time for some clock trivia

By ROSEMARY SADEZ FRIEDMANN, Scripps Howard News Service

Here's another question. What is different about the Roman numeral VI on all but the most recent grandfather clocks? Tick, tock, tick, tock ... OK, time's up. The answer is that the VI on the older clocks is placed upside down.
One more question. How was the number 4 depicted on the face of the older clocks? Today we know it is the numeral IV, but back before 1850 it was printed as IIII.
This is certainly true of many ofthe Mora and Bornholmer clocks, so I did some research and found this quite wonderful article by clock maker Niels Petersen. If you would like to read the article in Danish along with the photos, it can be found on this page. The English translation ....
I know four different explanation for the IIII number.
1.Jupiter.... When the clock was invented about 1200, Latin was the language of science and technology. In Latin, U and V and also I and J are the same so it is possible that IV or JU could be mistaken as a symbol for Jupiter, the Romans main god. Christians would not have wanted Jupiter on the clock face and would have instead chosen to use IIII.
2. French King Ludvig.....King Ludvig who reigned in the 1400's was interested in clockworks. He himself made clocks but for some reason or other he made the four as IIII. Perhaps out of respect for the king, other clock makers followed suit.
3. Roman Numerals....were used originally by putting the biggest number first and the lesser number after. The sequence would thus be I - II - III - IIII - IIII - V -VI and so on. As time went by, it was thought that one could give the smaller number a negative value by placing it in front of the bigger value and the sequence would then be I - II - III - IV - V and so forth.
4. The Decorative Explanation...This is the final explanation I can think of - purely decorative. If one forms a number 4 as IV, it might seem that there is too much weight on the clock face's one side because IV and V do not take up as much space as VII or VIII.


(this clock is sold)

Repeater String...Many clocks can have an extra chime string. This was your middle of the night time check. The explanation is that candles were expensive and difficult to light in the dark, so you would attach the string to your bed and if you woke and wanted to know what time it was, you would pull on the repeater string!
Please don't do it between ten of or ten after the hour or the timing will be impaired.
Otherwise just gently pull on this string...

Many clocks can have an extra chime string. This was your middle of the night time check. The explanation is that candles were expensive and difficult to light in the dark, so you would attach the string to your bed and if you woke and wanted to know what time it was, you would pull on the repeater string!
Please don't do it between ten of or ten after the hour or the timing will be impaired.
Otherwise just gently pull on this string...
This is where it is attached to the works.

If you can't see this video on your screen, please click here to view on YouTube.



Here is a scribbled history we found on a clock recently....Clock works made by A. Rafquist in Landsdrona born 4/5 1784 died 3/1 1844. This clock has belonged to Head Keeper Samuel Sonesson, Branstaholm born 9/11 1854 in Haastad died 18/6 1930 His widow Elin C Persson in Branstad born 5/9 1868 died in Eslov 22/7 1957 Their son the scribe for Harad, Lennart Sonesson in Horby in Branstad born 11/9 1905. Clock maker Ratqvists daughter Anna Katerina was married to customs officer Petter Relnhardt in Landskrona who was killed the 5th of July 1832 by a murderer’s oak club. Witness to the murder was his sister in law Maria and Sofie Ratqvist.
Thorbjorn Lindell Sunday the 1st of April 1984, the clock was bought on auction at Ornas Slott by Torbjorn Lindell. The clock came home to Landskrona after 150 years.
Landskrona 8/4 1984

Here are two interesting clock weights showing true ingenuity. The one to the right is a cannon ball!