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One of the oldest wrist watches

November 17 2006 at 11:36 AM

PeterCDE  (Login pc01)

G'day,

during an ongoing exhibition, this piece is on show and it might be interesting to have a look into the deep past:





As you may know, Girard-Perregaux was the first to introduce watches to be worn on wrists. There used to be such pieces before, created on individual order with a focus on the jewellery aspect. Back in those days, wearing a watch on a strap or bracelet was quite an outlandish idea!
Nonetheless, Girard-Perregaux to do the first serial produced wrist watch back in 1880´s on appointment of the Royal German Navy then.

In this, the pictured piece might be regarded the "grand pa" of wrist watches.
Created around 1840, it is a highly unusual watch for it´s time and accompanied by a then more conventional pendant watch and a snuff box.
As you may see, it´s a key-wound pocket watch made into a special solid gold case with gold bracelet attached, which is decorated with floral motifs in champlevé enamel and precious stones. Not a cheap acquisition for sure!



As to the make, this goes back to Manufacture J.F. Bautté being the oldest "branch" in GP´s "history tree". J.F. Bautté founded the branded in 1791; subsequently it was sold and merged with Girard-Perregaux in 1906.

I think it´s interesting; it´s not just a very unusual watch, but very finely made either. Such creativity and excellence seems to be in the DNA of Girard-Perregaux - GP´s pieces like the Three Gold Bridges are valid proof!

Greetings from Germany,

Peter

 
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