Cuckoo Clock Guide
Cuckoo clocks are decorative wood wall clocks that imitate the call of a cuckoo bird when striking the hours. Sometimes known as Black Forest clocks, they were invented in 1738 by Franz Anton Ketterer, a native of Germany's Black Forest. Early cuckoo clocks were fairly primitive, using wood plates and gears in their movements. They were made as wall clocks rather than mantel clocks because most fireplaces in Germany had no mantels.
Cuckoo clocks are designed with carved wood cases, painted wood dials, gable roofs and rear flaps for access to their clock movements. Most cuckoo clocks are weight driven and have 30-hour movements with an anchor escapement, a long pendulum, and pine cone shaped weights. A cuckoo clock usually features a trap door above its clock face. A painted wood cuckoo bird automaton emerges from behind the trap door when the clock strikes. Some clocks feature small music boxes that play a melody every hour and half-hour. More elaborate clocks may even perform an animation while the music box plays its tune. In recent years, battery powered cuckoo clocks with quartz movements and electronically generated sounds have been developed.
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Cuckoo Clocks - Black Forest Clocks