LÉPINE Jean Antoine, son of Jean. Paris (Place Dauphine), b.1720, d.1814. An eminent maker. Married. A, C. Caron's daughter in
1756, and worked as CARON ET LUPINE till 1769. Left his business to his son-in-law RAGUET in 1783.
Watchmaker to Louis XV, Louis XVI and Napoleon I.
Introduced about 1760 the 'Lepine calibre,' in which separate bars were used instead of a single top plate.
Introduced the use of a mainspring barrel supported at one end only, and other changes, leading, with cyl. escapement, to thin watches. Described a repeating movement using rack in place of chain, in Mémbre de 1'Acadademy des Science in 1766.
Invented the virgule escapement and a keyless winding.
Acted as agent for Voltaire's workshops at Ferney ca.1770.
4-colour g. watch: Victoria and Albert Museum. S. Kensington
Enamelled watch and chatelaine: Fitzwilliam Museum, Cambridge,
Six watches: Guildhall Museum
Two with virgule escapement: Collection of the late Major Chamberlaine
4-colour gold watch Fränkel coll.
Lyre watch: Basle Museum
Gold enamelled watches: M.P.S. Dresden. Watch Carnegie Museum
Two 4-colour gold watches: National Museum Stockholm,
Watch in porcelain case: Gélis coll.
Watch in ring: Ilbert coll.
Astro. clock and three mantel clocks: Buckingham Palace, London
Two clocks: Palais de Compiègne, one made for Napoleon.
Clock made for Josephine, Mobilier National, Paris
Lepine's business was sold in 1810 to J. B. CHAPUY, who employed Jacques Lepine. It was sold in 1827 to DESCHAMP, who was succeeded in 1832 by FABRE. The business continued under the name Lépine till ca.1916.