Patek Philippe. A very fine and extremely rare 18K gold perpetual calendar wristwatch with sweep centre seconds, moon phases, box and highly unusual case design
Prospective purchasers are advised that several co… Read more
Patek Philippe. A very fine and extremely rare 18K gold perpetual calendar wristwatch with sweep centre seconds, moon phases, box and highly unusual case design


Patek Philippe. A very fine and extremely rare 18K gold perpetual calendar wristwatch with sweep centre seconds, moon phases, box and highly unusual case design
Signed Patek Philippe, Genève, ref. 2497, movement no. 888'027, case no. 663'402, manufactured in 1953
Cal. 27 SC nickel-finished lever movement stamped twice with the Geneva seal, 18 jewels, bimetallic compensation balance, silvered matte dial, applied gold dot and Arabic numerals, sweep centre seconds, two windows for day and month, subsidiary dial for date and moon phases, large circular case, slender elongated lugs, snap on back, 18K gold Patek Philippe buckle, case, dial and movement signed
37 mm. diam.
The present watch is prominently described and illustrated in Patek Philippe Complicated Wrist Watches by Giampiero Negretti & Paolo de Vecchi, pp. 152 & 153.
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.

Brought to you by

Dr. Nathalie Monbaron
Dr. Nathalie Monbaron

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Lot Essay

With Patek Philippe Extract from the Archives confirming production of the present watch with raised hour markers in gold in 1953 and its subsequent sale on 19 November 1953. Furthermore delivered with Patek Philippe contemporary brown presentation box.

References 2497/2498
Until to date only known through literature, the present watch is a rare jewel in the family of complicated Patek Philippe wristwatches. Not only the scholarly eye immediately acknowledges the case design completely differing in virtually all aspects from any other reference of Patek Philippe's 1950s production of perpetual calendar wristwatches.

At first sight the beholder's attention is immediately drawn to the uniquely shaped lugs. In fact, whereas Patek Philippe's 2497 and 2438/1 family from the 1950s are distinguished by their more substantial and rather geometric lugs with stepped sides, the watch offered here for sale strikes with its slender, elongated and curved style lugs. At a second glance one notices that the entire case body is also completely different to the better known 2497 style as thinner in height and less convex. Furthermore, the bezel is slightly convex whereas the normal 2497 is concave. Also the case back has its unique design and does not compare with any known shape of other perpetual calendar models from the period.

This unique case design is only known from one other perpetual calendar wristwatch by Patek Philippe, movement no. 966'360, case no. 663'403. Designated as a reference 2498, the latter is fitted with a calibre 12'''120 Q and consequently featuring subsidiary seconds whereas the present watch is equipped with calibre 27 SC Q and therefore logically sweep centre seconds. The most interesting fact however is that these two watches with identical case design, however different movements, have consecutive case numbers, underlining not only their extreme rarity but also their shared identity.

Research in literature resulted in the discovery of a perpetual calendar chronograph wristwatch with the very same case design but featuring a movement and dial which can be considered identical to the contemporarily manufactured reference 2499 first series. The whereabouts of this watch are today not known.

Taking all of the above comparisons into consideration, one may only speculate about the origins of this small run of 2498 style complicated wristwatches. Interestingly, of each perpetual calendar style in production in the very early 1950s (perpetual calendar with subsidiary seconds like ref. 1526, perpetual calendar with centre seconds like ref. 2497 and perpetual calendar chronograph, ref. 2499) it appears one example was made in that variant case "reference 2498 style" version. Consequently, one can safely consider the present watch part of a prototype or study series which was later abandoned in favour of the today better known case shape.

The present watch, not only of superb rarity but also blessed with a highly distinguished provenance and freshness to the auction market, is furthermore preserved in exquisite condition. The case has not suffered from strong wear and consequently has hardly been exposed to repeated polishing. All in all, it must be considered for many important collections a long awaited "missing link".

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