W. Norton (born ca.1810). <em>Thermometer</em>, ca. 1855. Walnut, brass, glass, mercury, 18 1/2 x 5 1/4 x 1 5/8 in. (47 x 13.3 x 4.1 cm). Brooklyn Museum, Gift of Paul F. Walter, by exchange, 2011.39. Creative Commons-BY (Photo: Brooklyn Museum, CUR.2011.39.jpg)


Artist:W. Norton

Medium: Walnut, brass, glass, mercury

Geograhical Locations:

Dates:ca. 1855

Dimensions: 18 1/2 x 5 1/4 x 1 5/8 in. (47 x 13.3 x 4.1 cm)


Museum Location: Decorative Art, 19th Century, 4th Floor

Accession Number: 2011.39

Image: CUR.2011.39.jpg,

Catalogue Description:
Glass and mercury thermometer on flat, inverted u-shaped patinated brass background set into high-relief hand carved dark-stained walnut frame in the Rococo Revival style. Raised scroll with leaf-like detailing at top. Below scroll, stylized leaves flank eight-petal flower with semi-spherical center. Irregularly spaced incised lines of varied lengths radiate around top center flower and scroll, continuing horizontally around outer edges of wood frame. Thin concave-bevel wood frame surrounds brass thermometer background and tapers outward to heavily carved surround with symmetrical jagged-edged outline. On brass, clear glass vertical tube with white background and mercury terminating in bulbous mercury well at bottom. On either side of flared wood surround, jagged scrolls at top uncurl into abstract twigs with flower bases, a four-petal flower proper right, seven-petal flower proper left. A pair of stylized leaves sit beneath each flower, roughly at center height of the object. A pair of stylized scrolls, similar to those at object’s upper half, appear at the bottom corners of the wood frame. At bottom center of the wood frame, a four-petal flower with semi-spherical center rests on three stylized leaves, arranged proper left, proper right, and below. An inverted u-shaped metal plate hanger is fastened to the top back of the flat wood frame. Condition: Very good

Brooklyn Museum