60
60
Sigismund Rentzsch, London
A VERY RARE GOLD CASE WOUND AND CASE QUARTER REPEATING CYLINDER WATCH WITH KEYLESS HAND SETTING CIRCA 1827
Estimate
7,00010,000
JUMP TO LOT
60
Sigismund Rentzsch, London
A VERY RARE GOLD CASE WOUND AND CASE QUARTER REPEATING CYLINDER WATCH WITH KEYLESS HAND SETTING CIRCA 1827
Estimate
7,00010,000
JUMP TO LOT

Details & Cataloguing

The Celebration of the English Watch Part IV, George Daniels 20th Century Innovator

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London

Sigismund Rentzsch, London
A VERY RARE GOLD CASE WOUND AND CASE QUARTER REPEATING CYLINDER WATCH WITH KEYLESS HAND SETTING CIRCA 1827
Movement: gilded, ruby cylinder escapement, flat steel three-arm balance, going barrel with Geneva stop work, gear for winding to inside case back, rotating on a collar fixed to steel strap and interlocking with toothed wheel mounted above the barrel, repeating on a coiled gong, signed Rentzsch, London
Dial: gold, satin finished chapter ring with Roman numerals, outer pearled minute ring, engine turned centre, blued steel moon hands, off-set subsidiary seconds, signed beneath 12 o'clock
Case: gold, engine turned, the case back rotating counter clockwise to wind, front bezel rotating to activate repeating work, clockwise for the hours and anti-clockwise for quarters, the central cartouche with monogram JW unscrewing completely thereby allowing case back to be unscrewed clockwise for its release, pendant with cap lifting for hand-set, case with maker's mark LC with scroll above incuse for Louis Comtesse
diameter 47mm
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Literature

Terence Camerer Cuss, The English Watch 1585-1970, 2009, pp. 388-389, pl. 243

Catalogue Note

This unusual watch has an early form of keyless winding and hand-setting that is inventively and ingeniously executed. To the inside centre of the case back, a toothed wheel engages with a wheel fixed to the mainspring barrel, allowing the watch to be wound in a counter clockwise direction. By lifting the cap in the pendant, the hands may then be set. The bezel to the case front rotates and repeats the hours when turned clockwise, and the quarters when rotated anti-clockwise. Fixed to the front bezel, a small pawl extends a short distance over the edge of the dial; an annular rack is carried by the bezel clockwise until the pawl comes into contact with the tip of the hour hand.

A letter dated 1937 is recorded which states that this watch was reputedly given by Princess Sophia, daughter of King George III, to her lady-in-waiting, a member of the Wynyard family. Although no piece by Rentzsch survives in the Royal Collection, he is recorded on the list of royal tradesmen between 1821 and 1857. Indeed, on a receipted account from Sigismund Rentzsch for work carried out on the clocks and watches belonging to "Her Late Royal Highness Princess Augusta," dated October 1840, Rentzsch describes himself as “Watch & Clock Maker to the Queen, their Majesties the Dowager Queen, The King of Hanover, The king of Belgium and the rest of the Royal Family, inventor and sole vendor of the circumvoluting watches, St James’s Square” [for an illustration of the invoice, see: Antiquarian Horology, No. 4, Vol. 7, September 1971, p.340]. Confusingly, George III's sixth child was christened Augusta Sophia (1768-1840), while his twelfth was christened Matilda Sophia (1777-1848). For an article on Sigismund Rentzsch and a detailed description of a similar watch by this maker, see T. P. Camerer Cuss, Sigismund Rentzsch, Antiquarian Horology, No. 5, Vol. 5, December 1966, pp. 164-168. For a further keyless winding/repeating watch by Rentzsch, see: Peter Friess, Patek Philippe Museum, The Emergence of the Portable Watch, Vol. IV,  2015, p.610.

The Celebration of the English Watch Part IV, George Daniels 20th Century Innovator

|
London