132
132
S. Smith & Son, London
AN IMPORTANT AND MASSIVE GOLD GRANDE AND PETITE SONNERIE TWO-TRAIN CLOCKWATCH WITH TRIP MINUTE REPETITION, PERPETUAL CALENDAR, SPLIT SECONDS CHRONOGRAPH AND TRI-COLOUR DIAL 1903, NO. 309-2
Estimate
170,000260,000
LOT SOLD. 218,750 GBP
JUMP TO LOT
132
S. Smith & Son, London
AN IMPORTANT AND MASSIVE GOLD GRANDE AND PETITE SONNERIE TWO-TRAIN CLOCKWATCH WITH TRIP MINUTE REPETITION, PERPETUAL CALENDAR, SPLIT SECONDS CHRONOGRAPH AND TRI-COLOUR DIAL 1903, NO. 309-2
Estimate
170,000260,000
LOT SOLD. 218,750 GBP
JUMP TO LOT

Details & Cataloguing

Masterworks of Time: George Daniels, Visionary

|
London

S. Smith & Son, London
AN IMPORTANT AND MASSIVE GOLD GRANDE AND PETITE SONNERIE TWO-TRAIN CLOCKWATCH WITH TRIP MINUTE REPETITION, PERPETUAL CALENDAR, SPLIT SECONDS CHRONOGRAPH AND TRI-COLOUR DIAL 1903, NO. 309-2
Movement: gilded three-quarter plate, two-train, lever escapement, bi-metallic compensation balance, precision regulation, the chronograph mechanism visible to the backplate, repeating on two coiled gongs, signed and numbered S. Smith & Son, Watchmaker to the Admiralty, 9 Strand, London, 309-2
Dial: white and turquoise enamel and gold, Roman numerals, three subsidiary dials for up-and-down indication combined with gold chapter ring for leap year indication, constant seconds combined with gold chapter ring for months, 60-minute register combined with gold chapter ring for days of the week, outer turquoise enamel ring calibrated for date with central gold indicating hand, blued steel spade hour and minute hands, blued steel split seconds hands, black outer ring for minutes/chronograph seconds  
Case: massive 18ct gold case with rounded bezels, plain polished cuvette, gold pendant and bow, slides to right case side for trip repeat and hour/quarters for selecting grande/petite sonnerie, further slide to lower left case side between 7 and 8 o'clock for strike/silent, olivette with protective shoulders, chronograph pusher through crown, large split pusher to its left, case back hallmarked 1903, gold polished cuvette, case and cuvette with case maker's mark SS for Samuel Smith and each numbered 309-2
diameter 77mm, height including pendant 106mm, depth including crystal 31.5mm
Read Condition Report Read Condition Report

Provenance

Collection of Wayne Mondello
Sotheby's New York, 17th June, 2003, lot 320
Antiquorum Geneva, 24th April 2004, lot 164

Literature

Terence Camerer-Cuss, The English Watch 1585-1970

Catalogue Note

At the turn of the 20th century, the firm S. Smith and Son was the most prominent London maker of complicated watches.  Samuel Smith, a jeweller and watchmaker, started the business in 1851, and worked alongside Nicole Nielsen, who produced watches for Smith.  Smith not only manufactured watches, but also produced excellent chronometers, whose performance made the firm a supplier to the Admiralty.  Shortly after this recognition, the firm expanded into a large manufacturing company under the supervision of Herbert S.A. Smith.  For generations to come, S.Smith & Son remained a family-run organization and further developed automobile and aircraft instruments in addition to clocks and watches.

The present lot is among the largest of watches built by S. Smith & Sons.  Thus, this piece belongs to a select group of oversized complicated watches made by one of the most prestigious English watchmakers at the turn of the last century.  

Another similarly sized complicated example is a special order double dialled astronomical watch by Audemars Piguet started in 1914 and completed in 1920, which had 15 complications.  The present lot, No. 309-2 is also very similar to a watch by E. Dent, which at 72 mm. in diameter, has nearly an identical dial layout.  However, the dial of the Dent was executed solely in white enamel, unlike the dial seen here, with its unusual tri-colour dial.  Interestingly, Dent produced that watch for the famous collector James Ward Packard of Warren, Ohio.  For an image of the Dent watch, see Fried, The Museum of the American Watchmakers Institute, the cover, and p. 89, exhibition no. P-19.

It is possible to speculate that the intended purchaser of the present lot may have been an astronomer, and would have required a clearly legible dial in order to take measurements.  The dial bears similarity to and possibly takes inspiration from the famous astronomical watches by Jacob Auch, who worked in Stuttgart in the early 19th century. The colouration of the present lot most notably resembles some of the Auch pieces.  For an example of a watch by Auch, see Sotheby's New York, Masterpieces from the Time Museum Part II, 19 June 2002, lot 53.

Masterworks of Time: George Daniels, Visionary

|
London