The Breguet Museum and its President, Marc A. Hayek, have acquired two exceptional Breguet watches that made their mark on fine watchmaking history, for a record price of nearly 7 million Swiss francs (about $7,430,000). Bought at a Christie’s auction in Geneva on Monday, May 14th, these masterpieces are the most expensive ever purchased in Breguet’s history, and the costliest Breguet antique watches ever sold at auction to date.
The first watch, no..2667 dating from 1814, went for the unequalled price of over 4 million Swiss francs (about $4,245,000). This thin pocket watch with two movements is based on the chronometer principle (resonance). It is an extremely rare piece made in 18-carat yellow gold, of unsurpassed delicacy and elegance. A-L. Breguet designed it to confirm his theory that two oscillating bodies in close proximity will influence each other. This objet d’art has two separate dials, the first numbered with Arabic numerals, the second with Roman numerals. It is an extraordinary timepiece that reflects both Breguet’s refined aesthetic sense and his innovative inventive genius.
The second antique piece, no..4111, is a thin flat equation-of-time and repeater watch, built on the chronometer principle. It repeats hours, half-hours, quarter-hours, and half-quarters. This “Grande Complication” watch dates from 1827 and was purchased for more than 2.5 million Swiss francs (about $2,560,000). It has an annual calendar as well as a manual perpetual calendar, and also displays mean and apparent solar time. In pursuit of aesthetic and functional perfection, the balance wheel was especially worked so that the watch would be extremely thin, fascinating technical feats in a “Grande Complication” watch.