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PATEK PHILIPPE. AN EXTREMELY FINE AND VERY RARE PLATINUM AUTOMATIC MINUTE REPEATING WRISTWATCH WITH ENAMEL DIAL
PATEK PHILIPPE. AN EXTREMELY FINE AND VERY RARE PLATINUM AUTOMATIC MINUTE REPEATING WRISTWATCH WITH ENAMEL DIAL
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> Some watches are pictured with straps made of en… Read more
PATEK PHILIPPE. AN EXTREMELY FINE AND VERY RARE PLATINUM AUTOMATIC MINUTE REPEATING WRISTWATCH WITH ENAMEL DIAL

SIGNED PATEK PHILIPPE, GENEVE, REF. 3979, MOVEMENT NO. 1'904'056, CASE NO. 2'947'060, MANUFACTURED IN 1994

Details
PATEK PHILIPPE. AN EXTREMELY FINE AND VERY RARE PLATINUM AUTOMATIC MINUTE REPEATING WRISTWATCH WITH ENAMEL DIAL
SIGNED PATEK PHILIPPE, GENEVE, REF. 3979, MOVEMENT NO. 1'904'056, CASE NO. 2'947'060, MANUFACTURED IN 1994
Movement: Cal. R 27 PS, automatic, 39 jewels, Geneva Seal, signed
Dial: Enamel with Roman numerals, signed
Case: Glazed display snap on back, 33 mm. diam., signed
With: Platinum Patek Philippe buckle, Certificate of Origin dated 7 December 1994 and product literature in leather folder, additional solid case back, Extract from the Archives confirming production of the present watch in 1994 and its subsequent sale on 8 December 1994, presentation box and outer packaging
Special Notice

> Some watches are pictured with straps made of endangered or protected animal materials such as alligator or crocodile. These endangered species straps are shown for display purposes only and are not for sale. Christie’s will remove and retain the strap prior to shipment from the sale site. At some sale sites, Christie’s may, at its discretion, make the displayed endangered species strap available to the buyer of the lot free of charge if collected in person from the sale site within 1 year of the date of the sale. Please check with the department for details on a particular lot. > Prospective purchasers are advised that several countries prohibit the importation of property containing materials from endangered species, including but not limited to coral, ivory, tortoiseshell and crocodile. Accordingly, prospective purchasers should familiarize themselves with relevant customs regulations prior to bidding if they intend to import this lot into another country.

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Yvonne Yu
Yvonne Yu

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Lot Essay

One of the most important wristwatches ever made in series by Patek Philippe, reference 3979 was launched in 1989 to celebrate the house’s 150th anniversary. Not only is this watch the first ever automatic minute repeater to be produced by Patek, but it was also discontinued shortly after in 1998, making the watch highly coveted and rare. As a result, finding examples in today’s market is always a significant discovery, and it is therefore Christie’s great pleasure today to present this lot.

According to research, only 100 examples of this reference were ever produced, with less than a dozen cased in platinum. Each watch was fitted with the ingeniously designed Calibre R 27 PS, which impresses with its small, but incredibly intricate design. Although the case is only 33.4 mm. in diameter, the movement nevertheless manages to contain 342 parts, including a micro-rotor and minute repeating mechanism. This is a horological feat that few manufactures in the industry can achieve, attesting to the level of skill and innovation belonging to the watchmakers at Patek Philippe.

Further enhancing the prestige of this reference is its aesthetic appeal, which does justice to a watch as mechanically advanced as this one. Although understated (with an uncluttered design featuring crisp, clear, black lines) a superb level of craftmanship was necessary to create the dial, which is made out of enamel. So time consuming is the process in handling such a material (which, in any event, is also extremely fragile and brittle) that it is rarely used in wristwatches, instead being conventionally used in pocket watches. Therefore, the very fact that this watch uses such a material for its dial only emphasises the reference’s exceptional quality and importance in Patek’s history.

The case of reference 3979 is remarkably handsome and well sized. The present watch Iis full in its proportions and the hallmarks to the back of the lugs are crisp. With its elegance and quiet sophistication, coupled with its unmatched level of technological innovation, there is perhaps no other watch that better highlights the essence of Patek Philippe.

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