Accompanied by Patek Philippe Extract from the Archives confirming production of the present watch in 1994 and its subsequent sale on 16 December 1994. Furthermore delivered with Patek Philippe wooden presentation box and Asprey outer cardboard box.
The present watch is the first and so far only example of a reference 3979 in white gold known to exist and also to appear in public to date. It has most probably been made by special order for one of Asprey's prestigious clients.
Manufacture of reference 3979, the legitimate successor of ref. 2524/1, was launched in 1989 with movement number 1'904'000, the vast majority cased in yellow gold. The model is not in production anymore.
It is fitted with the ingenious calibre R 27 PS which impresses not only by its remarkable number of 342 parts but also by Patek Philippe's masterly performance of combining a micro-rotor and a minute repeating mechanism in a proportionally small 12 1/2''' movement.
It is furthermore incorporating a "Cathedral" repeating mechanism of this watch consisting of a high-tone and a low-tone gong. When the repeating is activated, first the number of hours are stroke by means of one of the two hammers on the low-tone gong, followed by the quarter hours with double strikes on both the low-tone and the high-tone gong, and finally the number of minutes which have elapsed since the last quarter-hour with one hammer on the high-tone gong.
The length of the gong in a standard repeating mechanism corresponds to almost precisely one turn in the movement whereas those of the "Cathedral" mechanism exceed the case circumference by at least one and a half, even two turns. Consequently, a much richer and fuller timbre is achieved.
Reference 3979 illustrated in Patek Philippe Wristwatches by Martin Huber & Alan Banbery, second edition, p. 320.
The renowned jeweler Asprey in London was founded in 1781 by William Asprey and appointed jeweller to the Queen starting with Queen Victoria in 1861.
In the 1950s, the firm developed an important Middle Eastern clientele to whom they supplied high quality jewelery and watches, often according to special requests.