Lot No. 133 (89th Auction)
Swiss, Case No. 31163, 55 mm, 126 g, circa 1810

A gentleman's fine quarter repeating pocket watch "à trois couleurs" with two jacquemarts
Case: 18k rose gold, engine-turned, engine-turned band, slide for muting, pusher for repetition via pendant, case maker’s mark "MB" in a diamond frame, Geneva charge mark "G" (for gold artefacts, 1815-1881). Dial: silver, engine-turned and translucent cobalt blue enamelled, two screwed-on Indian jacquemart figures "à trois couleurs"; in the lower part of the dial a basket with fruit and a pigeon at the alter of love; applied brass chapter dial with Roman hours, baton hands. Movm.: full plate movement, keywind, gilt, 2 hammers, 2 gongs, three-arm brass balance, very finely engraved pierced balance bridge.

The fascination with the exotic, which is evident in the design of this dial, was prevalent throughout Europe in the 18th and early 19th century. Several developments during this period contributed to its enduring popularity. Firstly, european explorers started travelling to Tahiti - among them the French explorer Louis Antoine de Bougainville in 1767 and the English explorer James Cook, two years later. Reports about the harmonious way of life of the indigenous people in Tahiti reached Europe, causing a stir. The apparent contrast to the european society, caused even the intellectual elite to question the prevailing - comparatively corrupt - lifestyle of the time. Secondly, writers and progressive thinkers like Rousseau cultivated and popularised the notion of the le bon Sauvage (the noble savage). Many important literary works of the period where based on this idea - such as "Robinson Crusoe" by Daniel Defoe (1719), "Gulliver's Travels" by Jonathan Swift (1724), "Paul et Virginie" by B. de Saint Pierre (1787) and "Atala" by Vicomte de Chateaubriand (1801).
Estimate  3,500 - 6,000 €

Price Realised  4,000 €
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