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Patek Philippe. A Rare 18k Gold World Time Wristwatch
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Patek Philippe. A Rare 18k Gold World Time Wristwatch

SIGNED PATEK PHILIPPE, GENÈVE, REF. 1415, MOVEMENT NO. 962'488, CASE NO. 655'699, MANUFACTURED IN 1948

Details
Patek Philippe. A Rare 18k Gold World Time Wristwatch
Signed Patek Philippe, Genève, Ref. 1415, Movement No. 962'488, Case No. 655'699, Manufactured in 1948
Cal. 12'''120 HU mechanical movement, 18 jewels, silvered matte dial, applied Roman and baton numerals, revolving 24-hour dial with night and day zone, circular case, bezel engraved with 41 world cities, teardrop lugs, snap on case back, 18k gold Patek Philippe buckle, case, dial, and movement signed
31mm diam.
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.

Lot Essay

With Patek Philippe Extract from the Archives confirming production of the present watch in 1948 and its subsequent sale on April 21st of 1950. Further accompanied by a Patek Philippe presentation case, original Patek Philippe advertisement for the World Time Wristwatch, and original Patek Philippe World Time operation instruction sheet.

Reference 1415 was introduced to the market in 1939 and remained in production until circa 1954. The world time mechanism was invented by Louis Cottier, a celebrated Geneva watchmaker. This patented movement was based on the Patek Philippe in-house caliber 12-120, and only 115 movements were upgraded for this model.

The reference 1415 HU (Heure Universelle, or World Time) was cased in either yellow or pink gold, with only one known example cased in platinum. Cases were made by Wenger, featuring teardrop lugs. André and Edouard Wenger were some of the most well-known casemakers for Geneva horology, designing wrist and pocket watch cases for some of the most important companies. During the 1930's following the recession, Wenger specialized in steel cases, pioneering the development of the "acier inoxidable" process, and became Patek Philippe's favorite case maker for both shape and steel watches.

Until 1948, the reference 1415 HU was available with a classic metal dial, either silvered, or on rare occasion, rose. The first series of dials featured black enamel baton and Roman numerals, the second series featured black enamel baton numerals and applied gold Roman numerals, the third series, of which the present watch is part of, featured all applied gold baton and Roman indexes. During the last years of production, the model was available in very limited quantity with a cloisonné enamel dial.

The bezel was hand-engraved, and displayed the names of international cities around the world. Early examples of the reference 1415 HU featured only 28 city names, while later generations featured 41 international city names.

At its introduction, the reference 1415 HU was originally advertised as a "cleverly designed watch, for men with international interests", and retailed for $500 in 18k yellow gold. Appealing to travellers with international business relations, the Patek Philippe World Time wristwatch was marketed as indispensable, a simple flick of the bezel allowing the wearer to keep track of the local time wherever they were located on the globe.

The present watch is from the later generation reference 1415 HU, featuring the names of 41 cities on the bezel and with all applied gold indexes. Fresh to the market after being hidden in a drawer for decades, this is one of the finest examples of a reference 1415 to appear on the market in recent years. Featuring strong hallmarks and good case definition, the future owner will enjoy a sense of elegance from this wonderfully complicated timepiece.

To the best of our knowledge this watch has never before been offered in public.

Examples of the reference 1415 HU are illustrated in Patek Philippe Wristwatches by Martin Huber & Alan Banbery, second edition, pp. 243-247.

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