JAMES MCCABE, LONDON | A FINE GOLD, ENAMEL AND DIAMOND-SET HALF-HUNTING CASED MINUTE REPEATING KEYLESS LEVER WATCH WITH CONCEALED POLYCHROME ENAMEL PAINTED PORTRAIT OF AN INDIAN GENTLEMAN, MADE FOR THE INDIAN MARKET 1877, NO. 08849
Estimate: 15,000 - 25,000 GBP
JAMES MCCABE, LONDON
A FINE GOLD, ENAMEL AND DIAMOND-SET HALF-HUNTING CASED MINUTE REPEATING KEYLESS LEVER WATCH WITH CONCEALED POLYCHROME ENAMEL PAINTED PORTRAIT OF AN INDIAN GENTLEMAN, MADE FOR THE INDIAN MARKET
1877, NO. 08849
gilded 3/4 plate lever movement, cut and compensated bi-metallic balance, diamond endstone, steel hammers repeating on coiled gongs, signed Jas. McCabe, Royal Exchange, London, no. 08849, white enamel dial with black Roman numerals, signed Jas. McCabe, London 08849, subsidiary seconds at 6, blued steel double spade hands, gold cuvette, 18ct gold case with opaque turquoise enamel heightened with diamond-set scrolling stylised foliage, the enamel to the front with scalloped inner edge and centred by a glazed aperture surrounded by blue enamel Roman numerals and minute ring, the back centred with a diamond-set monogram, decoratively chased and engraved bezels and pendant, slide repeat in the band, the front lid opening to reveal a finely painted polychrome enamel portrait of an Indian gentleman, case hallmarked 1877, cover and cuvette numbered 0884, with case maker's mark AS for Alfred Stram and IMC incuse for James McCabe
The case is in good order with crisp engraving and no losses to the enamel or diamonds. Hallmarks are crisp. The portrait inside the cuvette is free from chips or cracks
The dial is in good order with no visible cracks.
The watch ticks and repeats when wound the the slide repeat is activated.
"In response to your inquiry, we are pleased to provide you with a general report of the condition of the property described above. All dimensions in catalogue descriptions are approximate. Condition reports 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. Please note that we do not guarantee the authenticity of any individual component parts, such as wheels, hands, crowns, crystals, screws, bracelets and leather bands, since subsequent repairs and restoration work may have resulted in the replacement of original parts. Since we are not professional conservators or restorers, we urge you to consult with a restorer or conservator of your choice who will be better able to provide a detailed, professional report. Prospective buyers should inspect each lot to satisfy themselves as to condition and must understand that any statement made by Sotheby's is merely a subjective, qualified opinion. Prospective buyers should also refer to any Important Notices regarding this sale, which are printed in the Sale Catalogue. 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.NOTWITHSTANDING THIS REPORT OR ANY DISCUSSIONS CONCERNING A LOT, ALL LOTS ARE OFFERED AND SOLD AS IS" IN ACCORDANCE WITH THE CONDITIONS OF BUSINESS PRINTED IN THE SALE CATALOGUE."
A concise history of the McCabe family by Paul Hackamack can be found in Antiquarian Horology, No. 3, Vol. 10, Summer 1977, pp. 308-316. James McCabe was born c. 1748 in Ireland near to Belfast and moved to London in 1775. The firm is recorded at Fleet Street, Cheapside and the Royal Exchange. In 1781, McCabe was made a Freeman of the Clockmakers’ Company, later becoming a Warden. James died in 1811 and the firm was continued by his youngest son Robert. Robert died in 1860 and, in turn, his eldest son, Robert Jeremy McCabe, continued the family business until he closed it in 1879/80. Robert Jeremy appears to have spent the remainder of his life as “a man of independent means” and died in 1902 [op. cit. p. 309].