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    Sale 1353

    Important Pocketwatches and Wristwatches

    12 May 2008, Geneva

  • Lot 361

    Patek Philippe. A very fine and rare 18K gold limited edition self-winding perpetual calendar wristwatch with phases of the moon, made for the 225th anniversary of Beyer Zürich

    SIGNED PATEK PHILIPPE, GENEVE, BEYER, FABRIQUÉE POUR LE 225ÈME ANNIVERSAIRE DE BEYER À ZÜRICH 1760-1985, NO. 6, REF. 3940, MOVEMENT NO. 770'006, CASE NO. 2'817'883, MANUFACTURED IN 1985

    Price Realised  

    Patek Philippe. A very fine and rare 18K gold limited edition self-winding perpetual calendar wristwatch with phases of the moon, made for the 225th anniversary of Beyer Zürich
    Signed Patek Philippe, Geneve, Beyer, Fabriquée pour le 225ème anniversaire de Beyer à Zürich 1760-1985, No. 6, ref. 3940, movement no. 770'006, case no. 2'817'883, manufactured in 1985
    Cal. 240 Q nickel-finished lever movement stamped with the Geneva seal, 27 jewels, Gyromax balance, free sprung regulator, 22K gold micro-rotor, the champagne dial with applied gold baton numerals, gold dauphine hands, three subsidiary dials indicating day combined with 24 hour display, month combined with leap year indicator, phases of the moon combined with date, the circular case with stepped bezel, snap on back with engraved commemorative inscription, downturned lugs, 18K gold Patek Philippe buckle, case, dial and movement signed
    36 mm. diam.


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    Accompanied by Patek Philippe Extract from the Archives confirming production of the present watch in 1985 and its subsequent sale on 6 August 1985. Furthermore delivered with Patek Philippe period presentation box.

    Reference 3940 "Beyer"
    Made to commemorate the 225th anniversary of the celebrated Chronometrie Beyer in Zurich (1760 - 1985), this special edition was produced in a limited series of only 25 examples. Watches numbers 1 to 15 were fitted with a German calendar, numbers 16 to 25 with the English version. The watches were delivered to Chronometrie Beyer in May 1985.

    The first example bearing movement no. 770'001 was dedicated to Theodor Beyer on this occasion and is now in the prestigious 'Clock and Watch Museum Beyer Zurich'. It is also illustrated in Patek Philippe Wristwatches by Martin Huber & Alan Banbery, second edition, p. 294.
    The second example, movement no. 770'002, was sold on 9 July 1985 to the renowned watch collector Dr. Eugen Gschwind (1921-1991) in Basle. It is today in Patek Philippe's Museum in Geneva (Inv. P-1184) and exhibited in a special section reserved for watches formerly the property either of friends of Mr. Philippe Stern or other significant personalities.

    Watch number 6, the present watch, was the personal watch of Theodor Beyer (1926-2002) who represented the sixth generation of the Beyer family. It was purchased by the present owner, a private European collector, at the sale of "The Private Collection of Theodor Beyer" in Geneva on 16 November 2003.

    Beyer Chronometrie Zurich
    Since its foundation in 1760, the prestigious firm has always been passed down from father to son, each a fully trained watchmaker. Beyer Chronometrie was the first shop in Switzerland specializing exclusively in watches, clocks and jewellery. The firm is currently managed by René Beyer who represents the seventh generation of the Beyer family.

    The company also owns the renowned Clock and Watch Museum Beyer Zürich, one of the world's most important horological collections. It comprises some 500 pieces dating from 1400 BC to the present day.

    Provenance

    - 1985 to 2002: the personal watch of Theodor Beyer
    - 2003 until today: the property of a private European collector

    Theodor Beyer (1926-2002)
    As the sixth-generation owner of one of the world's leading watch retailers, Theodor Beyer was among the foremost figures on the international watch scene during the second half of the twentieth century. He was a broadly recognized scholar, an avid collector and brought together an exquisite range of timepieces that was to become the basis of the Clock and Watch Museum Beyer Zürich set up in 1970/71.

    Born in 1926 into a family of watch dealers and watchmakers whose business has existed since 1760, Theodor was exposed to the world of horology from an early age. After training as a watchmaker in Solothurn, Switzerland and subsequently working for the Henry Stern Watch Agency in New York, the twenty-one-year-old Theodor joined the family business, Chronometrie Beyer, in 1947. Just eight years later upon the passing of his mother, he took charge of the firm, which has occupied the same building at Bahnhofstrasse 31 for more than eighty years.

    Theodor steered the family business through a period of transition in the watch industry when a shift in consumer tastes meant less demand for traditional pocket watches. Despite that change in the market, the firm prospered over time and Theodor enjoyed close ties and personal friendships with many of the figures behind the Swiss watch industry, including Hans Wilsdorf, the founder of Rolex, and the Stern family, owners of Patek Philippe. Indeed, Chronometrie Beyer was the first dealership to sell Patek Philippe watches. In 1985, the long-standing ties between the Beyer and Stern families were further strengthened by the creation of a special limited edition of Ref. 3940, made in 25 examples to commemorate the 225th anniversary of the renowned Zürich retailer.

    The present limited edition watch with its champagne dial was Theodor's personal watch and is number 6, a significant number to him as he represented the 6th generation of Beyer Zürich. Theodor also travelled widely to auctions over the years and continued to expand his collection of timepieces. He died in 2002. The business is now run by his son René Beyer.


    Pre-Lot Text

    The Property of a Private European Collector - Formerly the personal watch of the late Theodor Beyer, Chronometrie Beyer, Zurich


    Literature

    Homage To Theodor Beyer, Tribune des Arts, Geneva, 2003.