The present watch is a fine example of an inking chronograph by Tiffany, Reed & Co., featuring chronograph centre seconds and an anti-clockwise running ten minute register. For further examples of inking chronographs see lots 63 (by Breguet Neveu & Compagnie), 64 (by J.W. Benson), 65 (by Rieussec) and 66 (by Patek Philippe), as well as a model brass escapement for an inking chronograph lot 67.
Nicolas Mathieu Rieussec, watchmaker to King Louis Philippe of France, was born in Toulouse in 1781 and invented the inking chronograph in 1821. The inking chronograph was then improved and perfected by Frederick Louis Fatton, one of Breguet's most gifted workmen.
The inking chronograph operates by means of a hand composed of two parts. The lower part is fitted with an ink bowl and the upper part with a thin needle which, when activated, compresses the lower part to release a trace of ink on the dial to give a visual read-out of the elapsed time.