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    Sale 1348

    Important Pocket Watches and Wristwatches

    12 November 2007, Geneva

  • Lot 122

    Poitevin. A fine and rare 18K gold and enamel hunter case minute repeating perpetual calendar chronograph keyless lever watch with phases of the moon, original box and photographic portrait on porcelain enamel

    SIGNED B. POITEVIN FABRICANT, 22, RUE VIVIENNE, PARIS, NO. 46138, CASE NO. 38425, CIRCA 1895

    Price Realised  

    Estimate

    Poitevin. A fine and rare 18K gold and enamel hunter case minute repeating perpetual calendar chronograph keyless lever watch with phases of the moon, original box and photographic portrait on porcelain enamel
    Signed B. Poitevin Fabricant, 22, rue Vivienne, Paris, No. 46138, case no. 38425, circa 1895
    With fully jewelled nickel-finished lever movement, bimetallic compensation balance, swan neck regulator, minute repeating on two polished steel hammers, the gold-framed cuvette set with the black and white portrait of a gentleman on porcelain enamel, the back inscribed Ament. Benque, B. Matuszewski Suc.eur, 33 rue Boissy d'Anglas, Paris, the white enamel dial with Roman numerals, outer five minute divisions, gold spade hands, four subsidiary dials indicating phases of the moon combined with constant seconds, day, date and month combined with leap year indicator, in circular case with engine-turned foliage decorated covers, the front centred by the inlaid black and red enamel initials JR, an inlaid black and red enamel foliage decoration to the hinged back, repeating slide and chronograph button in the band, case numbered, cuvette signed and numbered
    53 mm. diam.


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    Accompanied by Poitevin original fitted wooden leather presentation box with the initials JR on inlaid mother-of-pearl panel to the cover.

    The watchmaker and retailer Bernard Poitevin had shops in Geneva and Paris, specializing in high quality watches, both with and without complications, and chronometers with Geneva Bulletin d'Observatoire.

    According to the inscription on its back, the porcelain enamel miniature was made by Benque, the successor of B. Matuszewksi, located at 33, rue Boissy d'Anglas in Paris.

    The Polish cameraman Boleslaw Matuszewski (1856-1943) worked as an operator for the celebrated Lumière brothers in Paris. In 1897, after having become one of Tsar Nicholas II court photographers, he used the Lumières' Cinématographe to record the official visit of French President Félix Faure to St. Petersburg. Matuszewski also wrote two of the earliest books on cinema, one of which is recognised as the first written work pointing out the historical value of film and the importance of Film Archives.

    His method of fixing photographs on enamel, such as on the present watch, was described in a brochure edited in Paris in July 1901 entitled "Les Portraits sur Emaux Vitrifiés" (portraits on porcelain enamel).

    The famous French photographer J. Benque, located in a mansion at 33, rue du Boissy d'Anglas in Paris, also specialized in the manufacturing of such enamels.