Silver Ottoman Pocket Watch

Thread: Silver Ottoman Pocket Watch

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  1. #1
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    Silver Ottoman Pocket Watch

    Hi fellas,

    I'm pretty new here but since my recent acquisition I decided to seek for an advice. Ok here's the story:

    Yesterday I was cleaning an old house owned my grand parents and as far as I know no one lived inside this house for at least 30-40 years. Matter of fact no one even put a foot in there. There were spider webs all over the place, rats etc. etc. It wasn't the most pleasant job but it had to be done. Anyway long story short, when I moved the wardrobe to take it out I found this pocket watch under it. Honestly I don't know if this is worth a lot or not but it feels awesome to find such a piece laying around for so many years. And get that - IT STILL WORKS!!! Too bad all the hands were missing but I'm going back today or tomorrow to look for them under there.

    I looked around the web but couldn't find anything about that watch or the movement or anything for that matter. Only thing I came across was some antiques website that had almost the same watch and the guy said it was an old silver ottoman watch. Well since the ottoman empire hasn't been around for more than 100 years and Bulgaria has been under it's rule about 500 I'm starting to think this watch is pretty darn old. Anyway here are the pics. On the hunt for hands now lol








    So basically can anyone identify this watch? Or lead me toward a watchsmith (preferably in the EU) who can help me restore this piece?

    Oh and can someone reckon if this is worth anything. I won't be selling it as it's probably something special but just want to know if I have something precious in my hands
    Last edited by QinetiQ; April 14th, 2010 at 15:18.

  2. #2
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    Re: Silver Ottoman Pocket Watch

    Oh and here's a picture of the movement
    http://................./13z4lq9.jpg

  3. #3
    Member jedanzoom's Avatar
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    Re: Silver Ottoman Pocket Watch

    Maybe you'll find something similar on this site:

    https://forums.watchuseek.com/showthread.php?t=299040


    I dont see movement pieces.
    “Thoughts are the shadows of our feelings - always darker, emptier and simpler.”

    Friedrich Nietzsche

    http://www.portalsatova.com/forum/

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  5. #4
    Member AbslomRob's Avatar
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    Re: Silver Ottoman Pocket Watch

    A closer and more direct picture of the marks on the inside of the caseback should help identify the origin and date of the case, which may help. The ones I see from the pics are a bit confusing to me, becuase the lion passant (walking lion) typically indicates British Sterling Silver, but there also appears to be a fineness stamp that says 0.800, which isn't sterling. Could be german though.
    My growing collection of "affordable" vintages: http://www.abslomrob.com

  6. #5
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    Re: Silver Ottoman Pocket Watch

    Here's a movement picture

  7. #6
    Member rmelle's Avatar
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    Re: Silver Ottoman Pocket Watch

    Daer,
    A few years ago I had exactly the same watch, same maker, everything the same. Sold it quite quickly.
    I dated it back then: end 19th century English made, Turkish market.
    Quite commen watch at that time high quality English lever watch.
    There was a big Turkish market back then for the English as the Otoman and English were quite friendly with each other.... And both against Russia...(the big sleeping, but awakening bear)
    The hands should be brass, fine leave shape (very fine!)
    The one I had was a very good COSC runner at the moment, Almost all positions around +3/5s/24h
    Yours really need some TLC!!! quite an offbeat, quite some rust.
    SUCCES WITH YOUR NICE TURKISH MARKET WATCH!!!
    I think that IgorRIJEKA can help you, he lives in Croatia so maybe the neerest forum member of where you live... And I have the feeling he is quite good in Vintage old watches, and that he has the feeling for it...

    regards,
    RJ van Melle.

  8. #7
    Zenith Forum Co-moderator
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    Re: Silver Ottoman Pocket Watch

    The writing on the dial looks rather like it may be Farsi (Persian) rather than Arabic - it reads "Makhmoudieh" (where the "kh" is pronounced rather like the "ch" in "Loch Ness"). I presume that this is the name of the shop(owner) where the watch was sold. Other, similar watches have "K. Serkisoff" on the dial which is or was a jeweller/watchseller in Constantinople (=Istanbul).

    The movement has me stumped. It has a stamp with "Cordun" on it. On the other hand, the movement is absolutely identical to the Cal. 17'''-53 (or 18'''-53, or 19'''-53, depending on size) by Billodes. A number of other watches in the link given by jedanzoom have Billodes calibres in them. In case you don't know, Billodes was a brand of the company of George Favre-Jacot. The company still exists; it changed its name in 1911 to what it is now: Zenith.

    If you look here (5th picture from the top), you see a picture of the related Billodes Cal. 54 - the geartrain bridges are identical, only the central wheel and mainspring bridges have to be fused to give you the Cal. 53:

    http://monsite.wanadoo.fr/zenhitsite/page4.html

    Hartmut Richter

  9. #8
    Member rmelle's Avatar
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    Re: Silver Ottoman Pocket Watch

    Thank you Hartmut,
    Learning moment for me!
    never ever thought of the Zenith Connection back then!
    As the case was English market...
    I sold the Watch here in NL to A turkish man who was quite happy.
    As he pointed to me those watches in Turkey are quite valuable.
    What I don't know is wether Persian (Farsi) was (or not) spoken in Turkey or better The Ottoman Empire...............
    Here in NL these watches are not much appeciated, as there is no 19th century historical connection between the 2 countries.
    As a matter of fact I WAS surpriced by the quality but never ever thought of the Zenith connection....
    Thank you!

    regards,

    RJ van Melle.

  10. #9
    Zenith Forum Co-moderator
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    Re: Silver Ottoman Pocket Watch

    Quote Originally Posted by rmelle View Post
    Thank you Hartmut,
    Learning moment for me!
    never ever thought of the Zenith Connection back then!
    As the case was English market...
    I sold the Watch here in NL to A turkish man who was quite happy.
    As he pointed to me those watches in Turkey are quite valuable.
    What I don't know is wether Persian (Farsi) was (or not) spoken in Turkey or better The Ottoman Empire...............
    Here in NL these watches are not much appeciated, as there is no 19th century historical connection between the 2 countries.
    As a matter of fact I WAS surpriced by the quality but never ever thought of the Zenith connection....
    Thank you!

    regards,

    RJ van Melle.
    Well, as for the quality, remember that Zenith won far more prizes for accuracy than any other brand (nearly exactly twice as many as #2, Omega) Given the large number of watches in the link made for the oriental market and using Billodes calibres, they must have had quite an export trade going on at the time.....

    Why "Billodes"? That's the company address - Rue de Billodes, Le Locle. They started up there, are still located there and are reputed to be the watch company residing and producing in the same place and building for longer than any other.

    As for Farsi and Arabic, the two are different languages but use similar writing. Some arabic letters have made it into Farsi. I don't think that Farsi was ever spoken in Turkey.

    Hartmut Richter

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