Important Modern & Vintage Timepieces

Hong Kong, Apr 25, 2021

LOT 131

Decorative pocket watch; yellow gold, enamel, pearls and diamonds

HKD 46,000 - 73,840

USD 6,000 - 9,520 / CHF 5,500 - 8,850

Sold: HKD 60,000

Yellow gold, enamel, pearl-set and diamond-set, open-face, key-winding, round-shaped, “Directoire” pocket watch.

Case-back with a mythological scene showing a young couple at a sacrificial altar of Love; the painting on enamel on gold attributable to Jean-Louis Richter (1766-1841), Geneva; the case-back bezel set with two rows of half pearls, with a row of rose-cut diamonds in between; the front bezel set with a row of half-pearls; pendant and bow with a décor of gold paillons.

White enamel dial with suspended Arabic numerals; yellow gold pierced hands.

19’’’, full plate, gilded brass, with fusee and chain, verge escapement, monometallic balance (probably gilded brass) and blued steel flat hairspring, pierced and engraved gilded continental cock.

Grading System
Grade: AAA


Case: 3


Movement: 3*


Overhaul recommended, at buyer's expense

Dial: 3-01


HANDS Original

Brand Clary, probably Geneva

Year Circa 1800

Movement No. unnumbered

Case No. No. 12

Caliber 19''', fusee and chain, verge escapement

Dimensions Ø 49.9mm

Signature Case, Dial and Movement


Richter, Jean-Louis (1766-1841)

Learned his art in Geneva under David-Etienne Roux and Philippe-Samuel-Théodore Roux, becoming a most renowned enamel painter. His speciality was the painting of landscapes and particularly lake-side scenes and marine-scapes, often representing ships in a harbour or battles with fighting Men-of-War, but, on occasion, also portraits and hunting scenes. He did not often sign his work, but it is clearly recognised as being in his hand from the style and quality of the painting. He applied his art principally to watch cases and snuff-boxes and these were largely destined for the Chinese, Turkish, British and Italian markets. In 1828, he was in partnership with Aimé-Julien Troll (1781- 1852) and one can find work signed “Richter et Troll”. Richter, like other great enamel painters of the time, often found inspiration for his work from paintings or engravings by the artists then in fashion particularly Claude Vernet or the romanticised English and Irish rural life.



Several excellent quality Genevan watches, dating from the very end of the 18th century or the beginning of the 19th century, with gold case, enamel painting, some set with half pearls and / or diamonds, signed Clary are known.

Nothing is known about this watchmaker, who was most probably active in Geneva at the time, where several people bearing the surname Clary or Claris are listed.