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VACHERON CONSTANTIN. AN EXTREMELY FINE, RARE AND HISTORICALLY IMPORTANT OVERSIZED 18K PINK GOLD MINUTE REPEATING TRIPLE CALENDAR WRISTWATCH WITH TWO-TONE DIAL AND MOON PHASES
PROPERTY FROM THE COLLECTION OF A DISTINGUISHED GENTLEMAN
VACHERON CONSTANTIN. AN EXTREMELY FINE, RARE AND HISTORICALLY IMPORTANT OVERSIZED 18K PINK GOLD MINUTE REPEATING TRIPLE CALENDAR WRISTWATCH WITH TWO-TONE DIAL AND MOON PHASES

SIGNED VACHERON & CONSTANTIN, GENEVE, MOVEMENT NO. 455135, CASE NO. 280575, REF. 4293, MOVEMENT MANUFACTURED IN 1943, CASED AND SOLD IN 1957

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VACHERON CONSTANTIN. AN EXTREMELY FINE, RARE AND HISTORICALLY IMPORTANT OVERSIZED 18K PINK GOLD MINUTE REPEATING TRIPLE CALENDAR WRISTWATCH WITH TWO-TONE DIAL AND MOON PHASES Signed Vacheron & Constantin, Geneve, Movement No. 455135, Case No. 280575, Ref. 4293, Movement Manufactured in 1943, Cased and Sold in 1957 With nickel-finished lever movement, 29 jewels, bi-metallic compensation balance, adjusted to temperatures and 2 positions, silvered two-tone dial with applied pink gold Arabic and baton numerals, apertures for day and month, blue outer ring calibrated for date, fan-form subsidiary dial indicating the phases of the moon, oversized case with triple-stepped bezel and down-turned teardrop lugs, case, dial and movement signed, with an 18k pink gold Vacheron Constantin buckle 38mm diam.
Sale Room Notice
Please note the case number for this lot is 280573.

Lot Essay

Accompanied by Vacheron Constantin certificate of authenticity confirming the date of manufacture as 1957. Vacheron Constantin further records that the movement was manufactured in 1943.

Founded in 1755 Vacheron Constantin stands as the oldest watch manufacturing company in Geneva. Fifteen years after its creation this famed firm produced its first complicated timepieces. Over the years of its uninterrupted production Vacheron Constantin remained dedicated to being at the forefront of technical innovations and design as the company motto indicates, "Do better if possible and that is always possible".

It is within this context that this famed watch company created the pink gold reference 4293. Combining the complications of minute repeating, full calendar and phases of the moon, this magnificent wristwatch is arguably the most important vintage Vacheron Constantin wristwatch to appear on the market.

During the early decades of the 20th century, as interest in the wristwatch eclipsed the popularity of the pocket watch, Vacheron Constantin remained dedicated to continuing their established tradition of horological advancement. They continually worked on the reduction of the size of their movements allowing for many breakthroughs and varied combinations of complications, as seen in the reference 4293.

In particular minute repeaters are considered the pinnacle of Vacheron Constantin's production of complicated wristwatches. One such model, the reference 4261, was produced from 1942 in a total of 36 examples. Considered by collectors to be the most attractive minute repeating wristwatch, it is interesting to compare it with our current and more complicated example. The reference 4293 follows in the tradition of the reference 4261 by employing the similar case design featuring the distinctive and unique teardrop lugs. This design element, a hallmark of Vacheron Constantin, was employed by the firm for various models from time-only examples (ref. 4218 and 4412) to more complicated wristwatches (ref. 4241, with full calendar and moon phases, and ref. 4261) and finally to the ultimate combination of complications: the reference 4293, in effect a supreme joining of the reference 4241 and 4261 in one exceptional wristwatch.

The reference 4293 differs from the 4261 not only in the combination of complications but also in the size of its wonderful pink gold case. Though of similar design this wristwatch features a diameter of 38mm, compared to other minute repeating examples by Vacheron Constantin that more commonly feature cases of 35mm to 36mm. The impressive size of the reference 4293 results in a harmonious combination of proportion in case and dial design.

The reference 4293 sits as an extremely significant piece in the history of timekeeping, not only amongst the most important of Vacheron Constantin's wristwatch production but also as a testament to the constant evolution and innovations occurring during the first half of the 20th century by Swiss watch making firms. The combination of its complications, the overall beauty of its design, the oversized pink gold case and its freshness to the market with unbroken provenance place this watch as both a supreme collector's find and a milestone in the history of the wristwatch.

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