Breguet was appointed “Horloger de la Marine Royale” in 1815, filling a post that had remained vacant since the death of Louis Berthoud two years earlier. Although Breguet had experimented with pocket chronometers as early as 1789, it was after Breguet’s son, Antoine-Louis (1776-1858) had been taken into partnership in 1801 that the development of the firm’s chronometers began in earnest. Abraham-Louis Breguet felt that there was an inherent flaw with the fusee and chain system and developed his own going-barrel form of chronometer movement. This system was developed on the principle of two going barrels, however, examples of the company’s chronometers with a single going barrel, such as found in the present watch, are also known. The present lot also demonstrates how Breguet’s parachute ‘shock protection’ device was incorporated into some of the firm’s chronometer watches in order to protect the balance pivot – an especially useful feature for a precision timekeeper intended for use at sea.
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