Johann-Baptist Lampi the Elder
Grigory Potiomkin - Prince of Taurida (the Crimea), statesman, field marshal and president of the Collegium of War (equivalent of Minister of War)
The earliest mentions of the appearance of the Peacock Clock in Russia are connected with the name of Prince Potiomkin. The Prince had a passion for mechanical rarities and patronized the celebrated self-taught Russian mechanic Ivan Kulibin: he personally commissioned works from him, admiring the inventor's talent. It was said that "at a childish whim [the Prince] dispatched couriers across Russia ... and to Paris for fashionable curios… The Prince was very well read and intelligent, although he understood that a true expert can explain something to you in an hour, that you would not discover from books in a month."
When the Duchess of Kingston arrived in St Petersburg from London in 1777, she may well in the course of conversation have told Potiomkin of the splendid automata that she had seen in James Cox's museum. The Prince was quick to commission a large automaton with a timepiece from the celebrated maker to adorn the Empress's collection. Catherine had complete faith in the Prince's taste and paid for the commission from her "pocket money" without even seeing the piece itself. The clock reached the Russian capital in 1781, but then spent a long time disassembled in the Taurida Palace. In the spring of 1791, when the palace was being prepared for the celebration of the Russian capture of the Turkish fortress of Izmail the previous year, Prince Potiomkin decided to have it put together and set in working order.