Become a member of Allies in Recovery and we’ll teach you how to intervene, communicate and guide your loved one toward treatment.Become a member of Allies in Recovery today.

A Work of Genius In the Hermitage

Photo credit: Hermitage museum

It was a gift of General Potemkin to Catherine the Great; it was a challenge for one of the great inventors of 18th-century England. It remains an extraordinary, and entirely functional, work of art.

You can only say so much about the Peacock Clock: it truly must be seen (and heard) to be believed. But when you watch the video below, look for the extraordinary details: the revolving of a gilt dragonfly (which serves as the clock’s second hand), the lifelike movement of the peacock’s neck and head, the movement of the owl’s inner eyelids. Then remind yourself that its movements, music and bird-sounds all operate entirely mechanically—no circuits, no electricity. And then reflect that this extraordinary machine was built 260 years ago in a workshop in England.

On permanent display in St. Petersburg’s world-famous Hermitage Museum, the Peacock Clock is the only surviving automaton by British inventor James Cox. And every Wednesday, just as its done (off and on) for hundreds of years, this wonder comes to life. Have a look, and enjoy:


Related Posts from "Member Blogs"

What We Can and Can’t Control: It’s Good to Know the Difference

Erica2727 has a husband who’s working hard on his recovery, but his place of work concerns her. She would like him to consider various options, but isn’t sure about how to talk over such matters with him. Allies’ writer Laurie MacDougall offers a guide to a vital distinction: on the one hand, what we can and should seek to control; and on the other, what we cannot, and don’t need to burden ourselves with attempting.

How I Boiled Down CRAFT for My Teenage Kids

What can our children make of CRAFT? Allies’ writer Isabel Cooney has a powerful story to share—and some great thoughts for our community about opening a little window on the practice. As her experience suggests, CRAFT may have more to offer than a child or teen can truly take on. But young people may still benefit from an introduction to what the adults in their lives are trying to do.