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    Sale 1353

    Important Pocketwatches and Wristwatches

    12 May 2008, Geneva

  • Lot 371

    Cartier, made by Maurice Couët. An exceptionally fine and rare rock crystal, gold, silver-plated, enamel and diamond-set eight-day Day and Night Comet clock with original box

    SIGNED CARTIER, PARIS, NO. 391, CASE ALSO NUMBERED 70002 AND 984474, CIRCA 1915

    Price Realised  

    Cartier, made by Maurice Couët. An exceptionally fine and rare rock crystal, gold, silver-plated, enamel and diamond-set eight-day Day and Night Comet clock with original box
    Signed Cartier, Paris, No. 391, case also numbered 70002 and 984474, circa 1915
    With gilt-finished eight-day movement, 15 jewels, bimetallic compensation balance, the circular gold and champlevé white and light blue enamel scroll and foliage decorated dial with Roman numerals to the upper arc, outer gold and white champlevé enamel minute ring, the hour indicated by a diamond-set platinum pointer attached to the inner rotating disk decorated with light blue enamel on engine-turned sunburst background, set with platinum-mounted rose-cut diamond sun and crescent moon motifs, appearing in turn and indicating day and night, in circular bevelled rock crystal case, the winder in the silver-plated back with hinged silver-plated metal and rock crystal stand, case signed and numbered
    100 mm. diam.


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    Accompanied by Cartier France original fitted presentation box.


    The talented clockmaker Maurice Couët learned the basics of this fine art while working in his father's workshop in Evreux, France. After a tenure with Prévost in Paris, he opened his own workshop and, as of 1912, was commissioned by Cartier with the manufacture of imaginative clocks, such as the celebrated "Mystery" clocks. Couët's first inventions were the "planet" or "comet" clocks, also designated "semi-mystérieuses". These enchanting timepieces were usually featuring sky blue enamel dials and diamond-set hands formed as stars, moons or comet tails, poetically evoking the heavenly firmament and resembling the Islamic-style jewellery then made by Cartier.

    The rarity of the present "Comet" clock is enhanced by its excellent overall condition and the original box.

    For a description of these clocks and illustration of one of the earliest example of a "comet" clock, comparable to the present lot, see The Cartier Collection - Timepieces, Editions Flammarion, p. 151. Other examples are illustrated in Le Temps de Cartier by Jader Barracca, Giampiero Negretti, Franco Nencini, p. 62.