Lot No. 506 (92nd Auction)
Gaudron à Paris, 57 mm, 150 g, circa 1695

A verge pocket watch "Oignon" with central winding - from the watchmaker to the King of France and to the Duc d'Orleans - with watch chain and original crank watch key
Case: brass, covered with tortoiseshell, large lateral hinge. Dial: brass, gilt, chased and engraved, white enamel cartouches with blue radial Roman numerals, central volute and flower decor, blued single steel hand. Movm.: full plate movement, firegilt, signed, chain/fusee, Egyptian movement pillars, large three-arm steel balance, pierced balance bridge with finely engraved acanthus scrolls.

"Oignons" were most popular in France during the last 30 years of the Sun King’s reign; only a few of them were produced later than that. Single-handed oignons such as this one are always wound through the hand’s pivot where a central steel wheel under the dial transmits the power to another wheel on the worm gear shaft; two-handed oignons are designed with a winding hole in the dial. Presumably there were workshops in France that produced ebauches for oignons, however, as of today no such ebauche has ever surfaced. Oignons have a large gap between the plates which means that the parts of the movement are well visible; the viewer can easily see the individual parts and how they work like in a large-scale model - this was part of the great appeal these watches had. The oignon is robust and useful pocket watches that - in contrast to the previous pocket and pendant watches at the time - shows the time with adequate accuracy.
Estimate  3,200 - 4,500 €

Price Realised  5,000 €
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