With Patek Philippe Extract from the Archives confirming production of the present watch with views of Warsaw and Vilna to the covers and engraved coat of arms (tied arch) to the cuvette in 1847 and its subsequent sale on 25 July 1848.
This watch is one of the exceedingly rare examples of an early keywound watch made by Antoine Norbert de Patek in 1847 to appear in public to date. Fresh to the market it has survived the nearly 170 years of its existence in remarkably good condition, an important historical witness of Patek Philippe's early production. The cuvette bears the signature Patek i Spólka, "Patek & Co.", signature used by the manufacturer between 1845 and 1851.
The coat-of-arms are presumably those of Norbert Redziewicz for whom this watch must have been made by special order, featuring engraved views of the cities of Warsaw and Vilnius to which he certainly had a particular relationship, all confirmed by the Extract from the Archives.
The engraving on the front cover depicts a view of Warsaw as seen from the Vistula river around 1847. The history of Warsaw, today capital of Poland, spans over 1400 years. In that time, the city evolved from a cluster of villages to the capital of a major European power, the Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth and, under the patronage of its kings, a center of enlightenment and otherwise unknown tolerance. Fortified settlements founded in the 9th century form the core of the city, in today's Warsaw Old Town. The city has had a particularly tumultuous history for a European city. It experienced numerous plagues, invasions, and devastating fires. From 1945 to 1989 under Soviet communist dominance imposed after the end of World War II, Poland engaged in a democratic transition from 1989 to 1991 which put an end to the People's Republic of Poland and led to a democratic regime, called the Polish Third Republic.
The engraving on the back cover of the watch shows a view of the Upper Castle with remaining Gediminas Tower in Vilnius. Vilnius, Vilna in English, today the capital of Lithuania, was first mentioned in written sources in 1323 as the capital city of the Grand Duchy of Lithuania in the letters of Gediminas. The town reached the peak of its development under the reign of Sigismund II Augustus, Grand Duke of Lithuania and King of Poland, who moved his court there in 1544 with a large number of Polish royal servants, greatly impelling the Polonization of the city's inhabitants. In the 16th century, Vilnius became a constantly growing and developing city, and flourished further following the Union of Lublin (1569) which created the Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth. In 1795, Vilnius was annexed by the Russian Empire and became the capital of Vilna Governorate, a part of the Northwestern Krai. In March 1990, the Supreme Council of the Lithuanian SSR announced its independence from the Soviet Union and restored the independent Republic of Lithuania. The Soviet Union finally recognized Lithuanian independence in August 1991.