• Important Watches Including A  auction at Christies

    Sale 1372

    Important Watches Including A CONNOISSEUR'S VISION PART II

    10 May 2010, Geneva

  • Lot 55

    Rolex. A very fine and rare stainless steel chronograph wristwatch with black lacquer dial and bracelet


    Price Realised  


    Rolex. A very fine and rare stainless steel chronograph wristwatch with black lacquer dial and bracelet
    Signed Rolex, Oyster, Chronographe, Antimagnetique, retailed by Beyer Zürich, ref. 4537, case number 470'625, manufactured in 1946
    Cal. Valjoux 72 nickel-finished lever movement, 17 jewels, black lacquer dial, applied baton and Arabic 12 numerals, outer gilt telemetre and tachymetre scales, three engine-turned subsidiary dials for constant seconds, 30 minutes and 12 hours registers, tonneau-shaped water-resistant-type case, screw back, screw down crown, two round chronograph buttons in the band, stainless steel Rolex expandable bracelet, case, dial and movement signed
    36 mm. diam.

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    Reference 4537 is considered amongst the rarest gems in the Rolex Oyster chronograph family. Made during a very short period only, it was the first chronograph by Rolex with three subsidiary dials and the modernized "tonneau-shaped" Oyster case. In fact, it replaced reference 4048 which still featured the more round "Calatrava-style" case.

    Examples of reference 4537 in such original and well-preserved condition like the present watch are exceedingly rare. The specimen offered here for sale stands out by numerous details which are paramount to the demanding collector, such as the correct "Rolex Oyster" crown centred by the Swiss cross, the black lacquer dial with gilt printing and retailer's signature Beyer Zürich.

    This watch is not only an outstanding rarity in excellent overall condition but most importantly also an extremely attractive chronograph, one of the best-looking watches for daily wear.

    A predecessor of reference 6034 (see lot 336 in this auction), reference 4537 was available in yellow gold, pink gold and in stainless steel.

    Different examples of reference 4537 are described and illustrated in I Cronografi Rolex - La Leggenda, Pucci Papaleo Editore, pp. 222-227, and in 100 Superlative Rolex Watches by John Goldberger, p. 112.

    Beyer Chronometrie Zurich
    Founded in 1760 and celebrating their 250th anniversary this year, 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.

    Special Notice

    Prospective purchasers are advised that several countries prohibit the importation of property containing materials from endangered species, including but not limited to coral, ivory and tortoiseshell. Accordingly, prospective purchasers should familiarize themselves with relevant customs regulations prior to bidding if they intend to import this lot into another country.