Since their commercialization in the 16th century, at a time when grandeur and pomp were a must among nobility, watches were greeted with enormous enthusiasm. The inaccuracy of the early movements was equalized by the opulence of the case decoration, adapted to the taste of the period. The cases were equipped with a ring from which they could be hung from a ribbon or a chain and worn around the neck, demonstrating the wearer's wealth and status, treasures for ceremonial occasions.
The present watch is a very fine and exceedingly rare example of such timepiece, the most notable and eye-catching features doubtlessly the small diameter of only 26 mm. and the sumptuous case decoration consisting of a finely pierced, embossed and enameled openwork floral decoration. It is furthermore a scarce event to find a 17th century watch signed by a Scandinavian watchmaker.
Hans Rossbach or Roßbach of Copenhagen was active in the second half of the 17th century and worked around 1674 in Hamburg (see Meister der Uhrmacherkunst by Jürgen Abeler, p. 468).