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Details & Cataloguing

Masterworks of Time: Adolf Lange, The Golden Era of Glashütte

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Geneva

Swiss
AN EXTREMELY FINE AND RARE GOLD AND ENAMEL HUNTING CASED LEVER WATCH WITH FIVE POLYCHROME ENAMEL PAINTED PORTRAIT MINIATURES CIRCA 1875
Movement: frosted gilt bar, lever escapement, bi-metallic compensation balance, wolf's tooth winding, unsigned
Dial: white enamel, Roman numerals, outer minute ring, sunken subsidiary seconds, blued steel hands
Case: gold, the front with blue enamel monogram SLS, the back with polychrome enamel painted coat of arms with motto in gott allein, the inside front cover with polychrome enamel painted portrait miniature of a lady, the case back with portrait of a girl to the inside, gold cuvette with portrait of a young lady, the cuvette opening to reveal two further enamel panels, each with a portrait of a young girl, the miniatures all with decorative chased and engraved borders
diameter 53.5mm
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Provenance

Christie's Geneva, 7 November 1977, lot 142A
Aachener Auktionshaus Dr. Crott & Schmelzer, Auktion XIV, 26 April 1980, lot 131a

Catalogue Note

Most unusually arranged with a total of five separate enamel portraits, there is a 'double' inner cuvette which hinges open to reveal space for two of the portraits thereby ensuring the requisite space is available for all five paintings. The finely executed portraits are believed to be the wife and daughters of Samuel Leo Schuster (1830-1884) a merchant and army officer who married Lady Isabella Emma Elizabeth Fitzmaurice (1832-1906), eldest daughter of the 5th Earl of Orkney in 1858. The enamels are unsigned but may be the work of Juliette Hébert (b.1837).

The portraits appear to be as follows:
Inside front lid: Isabella Emma Elizabeth Schuster (née Fitzmaurice)
Inside back lid: Isabella Augusta Schuster (daughter) born c.1862
Cuvette: Lady Isabella Schuster as a young woman
Concealed within cuvette:
Inside cuvette (left): Flora Alexandra Schuster (daughter) born 1866 
Inside cuvette (right): Lily Geraldine Schuster (daughter) born 1865

Masterworks of Time: Adolf Lange, The Golden Era of Glashütte

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Geneva