GIRARD-PERREGAUX, CHAUX-DE-FONDS [芝柏，拉紹德封] | A RARE AND HEAVY GOLD HUNTING CASED KEYLESS ONE-MINUTE TOURBILLON WATCH WITH PIVOTED DETENT CHRONOMETER ESCAPEMENT, CIRCA 1890, THREE BRIDGE TOURBILLON [罕有黃金一分鐘陀飛輪懷錶備天文鐘擒縱系統，年份約1890，三橋陀飛輪]
A RARE AND HEAVY GOLD HUNTING CASED KEYLESS ONE-MINUTE TOURBILLON WATCH WITH PIVOTED DETENT CHRONOMETER ESCAPEMENT
CIRCA 1890, THREE BRIDGE TOURBILLON
• Movement: decoratively damascened, three pink gold bridges, pivoted detent chronometer escapement mounted upon a one-minute Guinand Type 2 tourbillon carriage, gold wheel train, bi-metallic compensation balance, the mainspring barrel engraved Girard-Perregaux, Patented March 25th 1884, regulator index to the top of the tourbillon cage
• Dial: white enamel, Roman numerals, sunken subsidiary seconds, Arabic outer minute ring, gold filigree hands, signed Girard-Perregaux, Chaux-de-Fonds
• Case: 18ct gold, each cover highly chased and engraved with flowers, foliage and scrolls, case front centred with a vacant shield-shaped cartouche, the back with a floral bouquet to the centre, the bezels with repeated geometric motifs, gold bow similarly decorated, lever for handset beneath bezel at 4 o'clock, glazed inner cuvette beneath a plain polished gold cuvette, covers and cuvette numbered 80957
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Movement running at time of cataloguing, handset operational. Some tarnishing visible to the mainplate and the barrel but generally the screw heads, bridges and plates appear to be in visually good condition. May benefit from a service.
Dial: appears to be in good condition.
Case: retains excellent definition to the chased and engraved decoration, minor scuffs and scratches.
The lot is sold in the condition it is in at the time of sale. The online condition report is provided to assist you with assessing the condition of the lot and is for guidance purposes only. The images of the lot also form part of the online condition report for the lot provided by Sotheby's. Any reference to condition in the online condition report does not amount to a full description of condition. The online condition report may make reference to particular imperfections of the lot but you should note that the lot may have other faults not expressly referred to in the online condition report of the lot or shown in the online images of the lot (for example, the online condition report may not specify mechanical replacements or imperfections to the movement, case, dial, pendulum, separate base(s) or dome). Watches in water-resistant cases have been opened to examine movements but no warranties are made that the watches are currently water-resistant. The online condition report may not refer to all faults, restoration, alteration or adaptation because Sotheby's is not a professional conservator or restorer but rather the online condition report is a statement of subjective, qualified opinion genuinely held by Sotheby's (for example, information regarding colour, clarity and weight of gemstones are statements of opinion only and not statements of fact by Sotheby's). Please also note that we do not guarantee the authenticity of any individual component parts, such as wheels, hands, crowns, crystals, screws, bracelets and wrist bands, since subsequent repairs and restoration work may have resulted in the replacement of original parts. In addition, certain images of the lot provided online may not accurately reflect the actual condition of the lot (for example, the online images may represent colours and shades which are different to the lot's actual colour and shades). For these reasons, the online condition report is not an alternative to taking your own professional advice regarding the condition of the lot. Prospective buyers should also refer to the Buying at Auction guide which includes important notices concerning the type of property in this sale. In particular, please note it is the purchaser's responsibility to comply with any applicable import and export matters, particularly in relation to lots incorporating materials from endangered species. Please be advised that wristbands made of materials derived from endangered or otherwise protected species (i.e. alligator and crocodile) are not sold with the watches and are for display purposes only. We reserve the right to remove these bands prior to shipping. NOTWITHSTANDING THIS ONLINE CONDITION REPORT OR ANY DISCUSSIONS CONCERNING A LOT, ALL LOTS ARE OFFERED AND SOLD "AS IS" IN ACCORDANCE WITH THE CONDITIONS OF BUSINESS (ONLINE ONLY).
R. Meis, Das Tourbillon, 1986, p. 347
Girard Perregaux's 'Three Bridge' movement design appears to have been first exhibited at the Paris Exhibition of 1867. At the 1881 Exhibition in La Chaux de Fonds, the jury noted "its [Girard-Perregaux's] straight, pointed bridges, made of gold, silver, steel, or nickel, are a special caliber, exhibited for the first time at the Paris Exhibition in 1867. These escapements can be adapted to lever, bascule, or tourbillon...Each [member] has admired these pieces, especially the tourbillon escapement, perfectly executed which produced a brilliant effect" (see K. Pritchard, Swiss Timepiece Makers 1775-1975, p. G-33). In 1884, Girard Perregaux took out a patent for the 'Three Bridge' design in the United States. Later, at the 1889 Paris Universal Exhibition, Constant Girard won a gold medal for a tourbillon movement with three gold bridges.
Early examples of the 'Three Bridge Tourbillon' are very rare; during Constant Girard's career, it is believed that only around 20 pieces were made, the last example from the first generation being completed in 1911 [see F. Chaille. Girard-Perregaux, 2004, p.84].
Highly appealing aesthetically, the movement of the three golden bridges appears beautifully simple, yet it masks the remarkable mechanical complexity of its design. Arguably Girard-Perregaux's most famous and prestigious innovation, the 'Three Bridge Tourbillon' is also the most visibly recognisable form of tourbillon movement.
The 'Three Gold Bridge' tourbillon was resurrected by the firm in 1981 with the production of a limited edition of 20 new tourbillons that were manufactured to the same specifications as the originals. The project was overseen by Denis Schnegg, one of Girard Perregaux's most talented watchmakers. Following the successful completion of the pocket watches, Girard-Perregaux put Schnegg in charge of a project to develop and build a new miniaturized version of the three bridge tourbillon movement that could be encased as a wristwatch. The wristwatch version was finally realized in 1991 to coincide with the 200 year anniversary of Girard-Perregaux.