In the collection of the Victoria and Albert Museum in London is this fascinating lock made in 1680 by British locksmith John Wilkes. Known as the detector lock, the brass and steel mechanism would have been fitted to a door where valuables are kept. The lock features a numbered dial that shows how many times a door had been opened. On the left side of the dial is a figure of a man holding a pointer and each time the key is turned in the lock, the engraved dials rotates and the pointer indicates a number. To reset the counter back to zero, just push the tiny button on the man's jacket. The keyhole is concealed by the man's front leg, which operates on a pivot and to reveal it, another button is pressed which swings the leg forward. The door-bolt is released by tilting the man's hat.
The inscription on the front of the lock reads:
If I had ye gift of tongue
I would declare and do no wrong
Who ye are ye come by stealth
To impare my Master's wealth.