Mantle clocks are mantel clocks. Did I just say that? Or did you just wonder what you read? The two spellings of the same word, mantle and mantel, are used almost interchangeably nowadays. As I write this blog post, I am looking up how many times mantle clocks and mantel clocks each show up? Honest, I haven’t looked before, but let’s find out together.
OK. Done. Mantle clocks yields about 739,000 results in a Google search. And mantel clocks? Only 278,000 Google search results. I am really shocked, I must say! I have always thought mantel clocks was the “American” spelling and mantle clocks was the European spelling. Apparently but not necessarily so.
Let’s move on to the dictionary definitions of mantle clocks and mantel clocks, and see if we glean any horological spelling insights, or clock terminology country of origin insights. I will now check the Random House dictionary online. I left my horological dictionary at home — just kidding, don’t have such a clocks dictionary …. not sure if I’ve ever even seen one before, and I’ve seen more clocks books of all types than I care to mention. Anyhow, on to the dictionary definitions of mantle clocks and mantel clocks. Ladies and Gentleman, place your clocks bets!
Well this is interesting and not very conclusive. Looking at the origins of the 2 terms: