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Whilst photographing a carriage clock that was given to my Gx2 Grandmother as a leaving present when she left service to get married in the 1890's, I discovered this writing on the inside of the lid of the carrying box beneath a removable layer of felt.

It's most likely just a makers mark and not important in any way, but one of those things that I want to investigate for ephemera information.

text on a carriage clock travel case

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    What country? Is it likely to be English or some other language? – user104 Jun 12 '13 at 15:01
  • ah yes, sorry. It would have been England. Both her and the family she worked for were in London, so I would assume that both the clock and its case were made in London also. Dangerous assumption? Maybe - but its the best guess I've got – AvieRose Jun 12 '13 at 15:09
  • Does the clock itself have any identifying info that would confirm (or otherwise) an English origin? There were a lot of French clocks available in England around that time... – user104 Jun 12 '13 at 15:26
  • Any clues on the clock itself? Bear in mind that the name on the clock is often the (original) retailer rather than the maker. In fact, I think I've seen antiques programs where they deliberately refer to a "Sponsor's mark" instead of a "Maker's mark" to emphasise what you're seeing. – AdrianB38 Jun 12 '13 at 15:43
  • Look as well inside the clock on the movement. – user104 Jun 12 '13 at 15:50
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Building on the earlier answers, I'd guess it's cutting instructions in French, for the felt.

Perhaps "9mm et Ang L OT sciee". (nine millimeters and angle [L]OT saw). Is the trim (depth into box, or into the square) around 9 millimeters?

Could the OT be onde triangulare (triangular wave, although it's a bit early for that term), or the sciee (saw) refer to a sawtooth stich pattern? Hard to see in the picture, are the stitches zig-zags?

The superimposed W maybe indicates the job was done (like a tick, or initial).

A "hem" in French is an "ourlet" so maybe OT sciee would be a "saw pattern hem".

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I don't believe that a maker's mark for the clock would be written in pencil(?) on the inside of a wooden (?) case... The clock maker's mark would be on or inside the clock. And the box is probably mass-produced.

I suspect that the clock is more likely to be French than English in origin. There were a lot of French clocks available in England around that time as per Have clock will travel. The story of the carriage clock (scroll down to find the article).

That said, the best I can make out is:

Q[?] [???] met or Q[?] [???] ret -- maybe Quinret or possibly Gunmet

angL O T with a W superimposed

Sciee

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  • Could the "Angl" stand for "Angleterre", implying the case (and the rest of the text) is French? – AdrianB38 Jun 12 '13 at 15:41
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    Two minds with a single thought. Except why write Angleterre on something that wasn't intended to be seen? I think more likely the wood in the case is reused from something that had some unrelated scrawl on it. An address perhaps on a packing case... – user104 Jun 12 '13 at 15:49
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    Sciee is French for "cut" not that that helps very much. – John Jun 12 '13 at 16:29

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