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Breguet, Paris, No. 2903, "Montre à répétition à minutes, mécanisme de Secondes d'un Coup". A fine and rare 18K gold minute repeating watch with jump centre seconds mechanism, in a shagreen fitted box
Breguet, Paris, No. 2903, "Montre à répétition à minutes, mécanisme de Secondes d'un Coup". A fine and rare 18K gold minute repeating watch with jump centre seconds mechanism, in a shagreen fitted box

SIGNED BREGUET, NO. 2903, SOLD ON 13 FEBRUARY 1817 TO THE DUKE OF MAILLÉ FOR THE SUM OF 3,600 FRANCS

Details
Breguet, Paris, No. 2903, "Montre à répétition à minutes, mécanisme de Secondes d'un Coup". A fine and rare 18K gold minute repeating watch with jump centre seconds mechanism, in a shagreen fitted box
Signed Breguet, No. 2903, sold on 13 February 1817 to the Duke of Maillé for the sum of 3,600 francs
22''' gilded brass movement, bar calibre with going-barrel, fully jewelled, straight line calibrated lever escapement with divided lift and straight pallets, banking against the escape wheel arbour, draw, two-arm bimetallic steel/platinum compensation balance, gold and platinum screws, with pare-chute suspension on both pivots, blued steel balance spring with terminal curve; visible typical Breguet dead seconds mechanism with bolt in the band at 3 o'clock; independent minute repeating train with two hammers on two gongs, by a pull-twist piston in the band at 2 o'clock, gold cuvette engraved with the tables for the months and the equation of time, engine-turned à grains d'orge silver dial no. 2043 by Pierre-Benjamin Tavernier, with radial Roman numerals on a plain reserve, outer minute track and blued steel Breguet hands; at 6 o'clock, subsidiary dial for the seconds with blued steel equilibrated hand; jump centre-seconds equilibrated blued steel hand; accompanied by a second dial by Droz (signed on the back), with suspended Breguet numerals and outer minute track, circular four body "forme quatre baguettes" case, the back engine-turned à grains d'orge; fluted band; ball-shaped pendant and round bow, case no. 2043 by Jean-Louis Joly, cuvette signed and numbered, silver dial with secret signature between 12 and 1, additional enamel dial signed by Breguet, back signed Droz
57.1 mm. diam.

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Lot Essay

With Breguet Certificate no. 4370 dated 23 March 2012.

Sold on 13 February 1817, to Charles François Armand de Maillé de La Tour-Landry (1770-1837), 2nd Duke of Maillé (1791-1837), for the amount of 3'600 francs. He was the father of Claire Clémence Henriette Claudine de Maillé de La Tour-Landry (1796-1861), Duchess of Castries, one of the most famous mistresses of Honoré de Balzac (1799-1850), French writer.

On this watch, because it has centre-seconds, the time setting is performed by opening the front bezel and inserting the winding-key into the hole at 3 o'clock. With this action, a sliding pinion moves and comes to mesh with the motion work.
The jump centre seconds system, so-called by Breguet Secondes d'un Coup, is a form of seconds indication for a watch. The seconds hand jumps from second to second to indicate the passing of whole seconds. This mechanism is fully explained and illustrated by George Daniels in his The Art of Breguet (1975), p. 350, ill. 424a-b.
The minute repeating mechanism is explained and illustrated in op.cit, pp. 341-342, ill. 415a-b.
The table for the months and the equation of time engraved on the cuvette gives the difference in minutes, between solar time and mean time, for some dates of each month.
The pare-chute (parachute) suspension is a safety device invented by Breguet to protect the pivots of a balance from damage if the watch is dropped or knocked. The bearing is fitted into a spring which flexes with the inertia of the balance and allows the shock to be taken by the stronger pivot shoulders of the balance staff. Sometimes it was called suspension élastique. This invention is fully explained and illustrated by George Daniels in his The Art of Breguet (1975), pp. 331-332, ill. 407a-b, 408 and 409a-b.

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