The present watch is fitted with Le Roy's "répétition à bâte levée" mechanism, invented in 1740. In order to produce "thin" repeating watches, Le Roy removed the bell, allowing the hammers to strike on the case. The pierced floral decorated balance cock of this watch is furthermore characteristic for Le Roy watches made at the period.
Julien Le Roy was one of the most celebrated French watchmakers of his time. Born in Tours in 1686 into a family of five generations of watch and clockmakers, he had already made his first clock by the age of 13. In 1699, he moved to Paris for further training. Together with his brothers, he founded one of the most important clock and watch workshops of the time. Le Roy's reputation was based on his mechanical discoveries, including a special repeating mechanism that improved the precision of watches and clocks. In 1713 he became "maître horloger", then "juré" of his guild. Further appointments followed, including the Directorship of the "Société des Arts", but the pinnacle of his achievements was being appointed clockmaker (Horloger Ordinaire du Roi) to King Louis XV in 1739.
Le Roy's workshop also produced a large number of ordinary clocks and watches to satisfy wide public demand. During his life he is known to have made or supervised over 3,500 watches, amounting to an average of one hundred movements a year, or one every three days. In contrast, other workshops only produced between thirty and fifty pieces per year.
Le Roy's extensive clientele included many members of Europe's noble and royal families. He carried on his business from premises in the Rue du Harlay until his death in 1759. His son Pierre (1717-1785), a brilliant clockmaker in his own right, continued until the early 1780s. Examples of Le Roy's work can be found in many major museums, notably the Louvre, Paris, and the Victoria and Albert Museum in London.