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Signed on the first draw near the eyepiece "C. W. Dixey. Optician to the Queen, New Bond Str. London." Exceptional all brass three draw telescope by the famous London maker. Features a rare rosewood barrel with brass ends, 1 1/2 inch objective lens with a clear, highly magnified image when properly adjusted. Survives in remarkably good shape with a few cosmetic issues, a few minor dents, partially bent eye piece and small chip on edge of the objective lens, an amazing item given its age and most likely military and maritime use. Open 30 inches, closed 9 3/4 inches.
(circa 1822-1860) New Bond St. London
HISTORY OF THE HOUSE OF DIXEY;
OPTICIANS AND FINE INSTRUMENT MAKERS
(Historic background from Websters Dictionary of Instrument Makers)
Edward Dixey apprenticed to George Linnell of the Spectacle makers' Company in 1771; free of the Company in 1778; succeeded Fraser and Son in 1817; was succeeded by George and Charles Dixey, sons or nephews. 335 Oxford Street (1782); 370 Oxford Street (1808); 335 Oxford Street (1822); all in London.
T.C.; George and Charles (Wastell) Dixey (1822-1838), which see; "Opticians to the King"; twin sons and successors to Edward Dixey; signed as "Late Fraser"; "Mathematical Instrument Makers to the King." 335 Oxford Street (1821) Typically signed G. and C. Dixey. 78 New Bond Street (1822-23); 3 New Bond Street (1825-28); all in London.
Charles Wastell Dixey, England, (1798-1880). "Optician to the Queen and to H.R.H. Prince Albert"; The successor to George and Charles Dixey; generally signed "C.W. Dixey." 335 Oxford Street (1821); 78 New Bond Street (1822-23); 3 New Bond Street (1825-60); all in London. Was optical and mathematical instrument maker to Queen Victoria (1819-1901) as well as to the King and Queen of Hanover, various members of the royal family and the King of Belgium.
Succeeded by C. W. Dixey & Son(s) in 1862. "Opticians to the Queen." 3 New Bond Street, London. Plural may have been dropped after 1848. Incorporated as a limited company 14th July 1930.
HOUSE OF DIXEY
C.W. Dixey & Son was established by William Fraser in 1777 as an optical and mathematical instrument company. Fraser's talent was recognized by King George III of England and Royal Warrants and commissions followed. However, the business declined when an assistant, Mr Grice, used the premises as a gambling den.
It was rescued in 1824 when Charles Wastell Dixey and his uncle acquired the business. Over the next century the family proudly served as optician to the King or Queen of England and created one of London's most distinguished companies.
The first 163 years were spent at 3 New Bond Street and 19 Old Bond Street. Then, as today, this was the most exclusive district of London, synonymous with the finest luxury goods. The Old Bond Street premises was destroyed in the Second World War, forcing relocation to London's medical district.
The Dixey family eventually transferred ownership to their loyal staff. Sadly, having survived recessions and wars, dishonesty almost destroyed the company in the 1990's.
C.W. Dixey & Son has served seven successive kings and queens of England, and the royal houses of nine nations. The company has been awarded the following Royal Warrants, which serve as marks of distinction.
C.W. Dixey & Son has also served the royal houses of Abyssinia; Belgium; China; France; Hanover; Hesse; Norway; Portugal; and Sweden. Other famous people that have owned optical instruments from this company includes In the 1790's, a luxury telescope was created for Emperor Qianlong of China. an exquisite telescope for Emperor Napoleon Bonaparte. Its fine green leather was decorated with eagles, a sowing of bees, and a crowned letter 'N'. In 1838, Charles Dixey was appointed optician to Queen Victoria, Empress of India. His son Adolphus and grandson Walter both held the same title, demonstrating both a tradition of excellence, and loyalty.
Visit their website at http://www.cwdixeyandson.com/ for more information about this exceptional company!
The last two images are copies from various archives for historic background and are not included with the purchase of the telescope.
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