Sotheby’s yearly December auction of fine watches and clocks will be taking place in New York, and leading the sales of the important timepieces will be the exceptionally rare Duc d’Orléans Breguet Sympathique, one of the masterpiece clocks from the Sympathique line that helped cement the reputation of Abraham-Louis Breguet.
Also featuring in the auction will be haute jewelry timepieces, Patek Philippe watches, and pocket watches from the Philadelphia Museum of Art.
The Duc d‘Orléans timepiece is dated to 1835 and is part of a line of clocks that is always associated with European royalty, palaces, and grand houses. The clock has the most complex of the Sympathique mechanisms; it can wind, regulate and set the time of its accompanying pocket watch. The winding mechanism was restored during the 20th century, and the clock has an estimated value of over $5 million.
Another rare piece that will be up for auction is the incredibly rare Patek Philippe Massive 18K Yellow Gold Center Seconds Wristwatch Ref 2512/1. Originally sold in 1988, the chronograph has remained with one owner for almost 25 years and is expected to sell for over $100,000. The watch, according to experts, may be one of the finest ever created and measures in at a massive 46mm in diameter.
One of the other clocks that will be on the auction block is one of the finest examples of Art Deco timepieces: a Vacheron Constantin desk clock that features onyx, nephrite, lapis lazuli, and gold. Created circa 1929, the piece is expected to fetch more than $80,000.