Importantes Montres de Collection

Geneva, May 15, 2011

LOT 549

Breguet - A La Marquise de Béthisy - Silver Carriage Clock with 10 Complications with Original Box & Key ? The Most Complicated Breguet Hump-Back Clock Known Breguet, ?Montre de Carosse?, No. 1559. Sold to The Marquise de Béthisy on May 6th, 1878, for 4000 Francs. Extremely fine and important, complicated, grande and petite sonnerie striking and repeating, 8-day going, silver hump-back carriage clock with quadruple digital annual perpetual calendar, alarm, moon phases and equation of time. Accompanied by the original Breguet gold-tooled red morocco travelling case, Breguet silver key and certificate.

CHF 150,000 - 250,000

USD 165,000 - 275,000 / EUR 115,000 - 190,000

Sold: CHF 200,500

C. Three-body, hump-back, polished, hinged front and back doors, gold repeat-button, silver carrying chain, bun feet. D. Silver with radial champlevé Roman numerals on a brushed reserve, outer minute divisions and Arabic five-minute numerals, inner alarm setting divisions, engine-turned center, engine-turned mask with linear apertures for the days of the week, date, months, year (1906?1921)and moonphases, sector for the equation of time below. Blued steel spade hands for the hours and minutes, gilt alarm hand, equation of time hand with gold sun. M. 129 x 104 mm., matte gilt, arch-top, four pillars secured by screws, going barrels for both trains, perpendicular anchor escapement beneath a matte gilt platform for the cut bimetallic compensation balance, blued steel Breguet balance spring, index regulator, separate train for the alarm, the calendar work with going barrel to power the date change, striking with two hammers on two coiled blued steel gongs, strike selection lever on the backplate. Dial and movement signed and numbered, case numbered. Dim. 156 x 120 x 68 mm.

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Grading System
Case: 2

Very good

Movement: 2*

Very good

Overhaul recommended, at buyer's expense

Dial: 2-01

Very good

HANDS Original


Of the eleven Breguet hump-back carriage clocks publically known to exist, the present clock is the most complicated. It has a total of 10 complications: Grande Sonnerie Striking; Petite sonnerie striking; alarm; perpetual calendar; days of the week; date; months; years, moon phases and equation of time. It is the only known example with quadruple digital perpetual calendar. Silver hump-back carriage clocks were introduced by Breguet circa 1812. Only a few were ever made, they are among the best ? and the most expensive - ever produced. During Breguet?s lifetime perhaps less than five were made and a similar small number were made in the late 19th and early 20th century, at the request of very important clients. The hump-back shape was very popular, its shape being used not only by the house of Breguet but by others such as Cole and Jump in England. Breguet was the inventor of the carriage clock, in total only about 200 are mentioned in the registers recording the entire Breguet production, beginning in the 1780s. Of all the Breguet carriage clocks, the ?hump-back? model is one of the most desirable, the shape having retained its modernity.
Bernardine Henriette Marie Emilie de l'Espine (d. 1895), marquise de Béthisy Was the second wife of Alfred-Gaston (1815-1881) marquis de Béthisy and Peer of France. Their daughter, Jeanne de Béthisy, divorced her first husband, the Baron Henri van de Werve et de Schilde in 1877. In 1878 Jeanne married a second time, to the Count of Louvencourt. It is possible that the present clock was bought by the Marquise as a wedding gift to her daughter.
The following are the known Breguet hump-back carriage clocks listed in order of complication: ? No. 1559 (the present clock): Grande & Petite sonnerie striking & repeating, alarm, quadruple perpetual calendar, moon phase and equation of time: Sold to The Marquise de Béthisy in 1878. ? No. 3749: Half-quarter repeating, alarm, quadruple digital calendar, moon phase and equation of time: sold to Colonel Cockerell in 1825. George Daniels, The Art of Breguet, p. 256. ? No. 2655: Half-quarter repeating, alarm, quadruple digital calendar and moon phase: sold to The Queen of Naples in 1812. Christie?s, Geneva, May 11, 2009, Lot 59. ? No. 2793: Half-quarter repeating, alarm, quadruple digital calendar and moon phase: sold to The Grand Duchess of Tuscany in 1813. George Daniels, The Art of Breguet, p. 227. ? No. 3629: Half-quarter repeating, alarm, quadruple digital calendar and moon phase: sold to Colonel Cooke in 1826. George Daniels, The Art of Breguet, p. 251. ? No. 2654: Perpetual calendar, moon phase and power-reserve indication: sold to Monsieur Bergaud in 1942. Antiquorum, Geneva, April 24, 1999, Lot 401. ? No. 150: Grande & Petite sonnerie, alarm & double calendar: sold to Mr. Paschkoff in 1843. Antiquorum, Geneva, September 20, 2001, Lot 148. ? No. 1745: Grande & Petite Sonnerie & alarm: sold to Grand Duke Alexis of Russia in 1894. Antiquorum, Geneva, April 24, 2004, Lot 54. ? No. 2426: Grande & Petite sonnerie & alarm: sold to Monsieur Charles de Wendel in 1905. Antiquorum, Geneva, November 12, 2006, Lot 57. ? No. 1083: Grande & Petite sonnerie & alarm: sold to Madame Polovtsoff in 1893. Antiquorum, Geneva, April 2, 2006, Lot 363. ? No. 2428: Grande & Petite sonnerie & alarm: sold to The Empress Marie Feodorovna of Russia in 1909. Antiquorum, Geneva, October 19, 2002, Lot 150.