Only Online Auction

Hong Kong, Mar 03, 2021


Abraham Cailliatte
“Bassine”-type single-hand pre-balance pocket watch with alarm; silver

HKD 61,000 - 78,000

CHF 7,000 - 9,000 / EUR 6,500 - 8,400 / USD 7,800 - 10,100

Sold: HKD 206,250

Silver, open-face, key-winding, round-shaped, “Bassine”-type, pre-balance pocket watch with one horological complication:
· Alarm on a bell.

Two-piece case, “bassine’’ with split bezel, the back entirely and finely pierced and engraved with foliage and strawberry flowers.

Silver champlevé dial with radial Roman numerals; inner gilded brass revolving alarm setting disc with radial Arabic numerals; blued steel single hand.

Movement 14’’’, full plate, gilded brass, “Balustre” pillars, fusee and chain, verge escapement, monometallic circular foliot (polished steel), pierced and engraved silver “Louis XIII” continental cock, silver regulator disc ; alarm train with fixed gilded brass barrel, pierced and engraved with foliage.

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Grading System
Grade: AAA


Case: 3


Movement: 3 *
Dial: 3-01


HANDS Original

Brand Abraham Cailliatte, Geneva

Year circa 1660

Movement No. unnumbered

Case No. unnumbered

Material silver

Diameter 38.1 mm.

Caliber 14’’’, fusee and chain, verge escapement

Signature movement


Cailliatte(or Caillatte, Caillate), Abraham
Geneva, March 2, 1642 – Geneva, April 22, 1710

Abraham Cailliatte is the son of Matthieu Cailliatte (1587-1661), who became Citizen (citoyen) of Geneva in 1612, and of Louise Penet (1606-1649). Matthieu Cailliatte was in charge of the fortification works of the city since 1636 (directeur des travaux de fortifications).

Matthieu’s father was Jean Cailliatte (c.1536-1619), goldsmith and barker born in Venice, bourgeois of Geneva (May 17, 1583). His grandfather was Vincent (or Vicentio) Cailliatte (or Quaiato, Quaiata, Cailhato, Quayato; c.1513-1577), born in Chioggia, Veneto, resident (habitant) of Geneva. According to some authors, the Latin boat was introduced on Lake Geneva by Vincent and Jean Cailliatte.

Abraham Cailliatte apprenticed as a watchmaker to Isaac Penard (1619-1676) in 1655.

He married on June 22, 1664, Anne Patron (1646-1706); the couple had 14 children, seven of whom reached adulthood.

As master watchmaker, he made simple watches and watches with astronomical and astrological complications, some with enamelled cases. He signed an apprenticeship contract with Jean Gentil in 1672.

He frequently worked with Pierre I Huaud (1612-1680), so-called le père (the Father), a Huguenot emigrant from Châtellerault, near Blois, where he was an apprentice goldsmith. The latter, also an enamel painter, introduced this art to Geneva.

We know several examples of their collaboration or that of his sons, Pierre II Huaud (1647-1698), Jean-Pierre Huaud (1655-1723) and Ami Huaud (1657-1724); including watches sold by our company (see list below).

Abraham Cailliatte lived all his life in the district of Saint-Gervais, on the right bank of the Rhône, and died at the age of 70 from a chest fluxion with fever.

· Basel, HistorischesMuseum – Haus zum Kirschgarten, Dr. E. Gschwind Foundation.
· Baltimore, Maryland, The Walters Art Museum (Inv. 58.26).
· Geneva, Patek Philippe Museum (Inv. S-226 ; Inv. S-405).
· La Chaux-de-Fonds, Musée International d’Horlogerie.
· New York, Metropolitan Museum (Inv. 7.190.1013).
· Paris, Le Louvre Museum (Inv. Inv. OA8332).

Some watches (sold by our auction house)
· Antiquorum, Hong Kong, auction, June 17, 1994, lot 324, sold for the amount of HK$ 638 250.-
· Antiquorum, Geneva, auction, October 12, 1996, lot 640, sold for the amount of CHF 86 000.-
· Antiquorum, Geneva, auction, April 18, 1998, lot 195, sold for the amount of CHF 91 500.-
· Antiquorum, Geneva, thematic auction, The Art of Horology in Geneva, November 13, 1999, lot 5, sold for the amount of CHF 113 500.-