A very decorative and stylish item of Swiss precision engineering; a clockwork automaton consisting of two singing birds, one red feathered and one yellow feathered, in a brass and wood grain effect bird cage. The birds both sing a complicated bird song that is produced from the clockwork movement that drives a set of bellows and plays a small adjustable whistle. As each bird sings their beaks open in time with the song, also, the red bird swivels back and forth in time with the tune.
The birds are each sat on a brass pillar perch which protrudes from the beige velvet base, between the pillars is a central "silk" flower with red berries that also has branches and leaves. The round brass rodded bird cage has a central ring type carrying handle and is fastened to the base with three threaded hooks. The base has three cork covered brass feet which screw into the hooks to hold the unit together.
This singing bird cage automaton dates to the mid 20th century probably around 1970 to 1980. The base is stamped Reuge Music Saint Croix made in Switzerland. There is a central winding key and a star stop lever. There are three settings, stop, intermittent and full continuous song.
The bird cage stands 10 inches (25.6 cm) high, 6 inches (15.3 cm) diameter with a total weight of 792 g.
Free UK and International postage with this item.
It is in excellent working condition with some loss of tail feathers on the red bird and a couple of leaves.
There are similar cages still available from Reuge but thay cost Chf 7,400 (£5,570) With singing birds the day will never be dull. This gilt cage will brighten up the room. Any home will be richer with the presence of two charming birds that will sing at your command.
This is a great and unusual item of vintage automata a charming and a very decorative object.