Who’s Who of English pocket watches makes market debut next month, entitled “The Celebration of the English Watch” with a series of auctions staged by Sotheby’s, London. Inspired by passion and curiosity, this landmark collection not only provides a snapshot of absorbing British history, but also brilliantly traces the evolution of watchmaking and horology in its entirety, right from the 17th-century to modern day to disperse what the house describes as the largest and most important private collection known to exist.
A gold cased pocket chronometer by John Arnold from 1782. Estimated at $300,000. Sotheby’s
Gold Quarter Repeating Pair Gased Verge Watch by John Halsted, 1712. Estimated to fetch $120,000. Sotheby’s
A rare and early silver gilt-metal cruciform watch, Circa 1625 – 1630 by John Willowe. Estimated at $45,000. Sotheby’s
Rare and historically significant silver astronomical verge watch with engraving of Charles I by Richard Bowen. Circa 1660. Estimated at $123,000. Sotheby’s
Very early sliver gilt-metal oval astronomical verge watch by David Ramsay, circa 1618. Estimated at $385,000. Sotheby’s.
Divided into four sales, the last in December 2016, the “Celebration of the English Watch” will see 317 lots cross the block with an estimated value of £10 million. The collection which is the culmination of years of searching for the best examples in wondrous condition with superb provenance, includes timepieces from as far back as the 16oo’s all the way through to present day.
The Celebration of the English Watch forces the observer to ask two questions: Firstly, ‘to what extent has history shaped British horology?’ and secondly, the other way round.