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    Sale 1357

    Important Watches

    17 November 2008, Geneva

  • Lot 217

    Gübelin. A very fine and rare 18K gold and cloisonné enamel openface automatic keyless lever watch


    Price Realised  


    Gübelin. A very fine and rare 18K gold and cloisonné enamel openface automatic keyless lever watch
    Signed Gübelin, case no. 137'393, manufactured in 1952
    Cal. Felsa 690 11 1/2''' nickel-finished lever movement, 25 jewels, the gold and translucent light blue enamel dial with cloisonné depiction of planet Saturn surrounded by stars and sunbeam, applied gold baton numerals, circular case, snap on back centred by cloisonné enamel scene depicting the earth with the continents Europe and Africa, surrounded by curved red and blue coloured rings with the signs of the zodiac, the rim in blue enamel and with sunbeam motif, case signed and numbered, movement signed
    45 mm. diam.

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    The present watch is part of an exceedingly small series of only three of such automatic openface watches made by Gübelin in 1952. The enamel decoration was made by E. Pfleghard (c1900-c1975) of Zürich, a renowned enamel artist working for Gübelin at the time.

    The motifs are based on astrology, the dial showing the planet Saturn, also known as the ''Guardian of the Spheres'' within a ring of fire, a reminiscent of the sun's heat and energy.

    The representation on the case back refers to the creation of the astrological chart determining the position of the stars at the exact moment of the birth of an individual. Planet Earth, precisely the continents Europe and Africa, are also shown, surrounded by two curved rings with the twelve signs of the zodiac, all resembling an open eye.
    The present watch, number 137'939, was sold at Christie's in Geneva on 8 November 1976 as part of the "Property of a Lady of the Egyptian Royal House", lot 172. It is believed that the Lady in question was Fathia Ghali, the sister of King Farouk. She was shot and killed by her husband in 1976. King Farouk, the last King of Egypt, was deposed in 1953 by General Abdul Nasser. Part of his possessions were sold at auction in 1954 by order of the Egyptian government.

    E. Gübelin
    Gübelin was founded in 1854 and has always been a family enterprise. Located in Lucerne, Switzerland, the renowned company has designed and retailed superior quality watches and clocks ever since. Today, Gübelin has branches throughout Europe.