A rare gold pocket watch built by British watchmaker Thomas Tompion went under the gavel at Sotheby’s Celebration of the English Watch, Part III sale on December 15th, selling for an expectedly significant sum of $233,000.
The timepiece is thought to be one of six gold cased Tompion repeating watches left in existence and also may be one of the earliest Tompion watches to have endstones. It features a gold Roman numeral with half hour divisions and Blue Steel Beetle and Poker Hands, which is paired with an outer Arabic numeral minute ring. The gold inner casing wears an intricate engraving of a fisherman by a lake, while the gold outer is pierced with similar engravings of birds, foliage, dolphins, masks and more. Timekeeping is kept up by a verge escapement and is joined by a repeater complication with two polished steel hammers enabling a chime every hour and quarter-hour.
While the Tompion watch represents one of the most exclusive lots to have crossed the auction block at the Celebration of the English Watch, it wasn’t the most expensive. That accolade went to a 1902 Charles Frodsham Chronograph, which blew away Sotheby’s pre-auction estimates after selling for $366,000. An 1800 William Anothony duplex made for the Chinese market also commanded a significant $263,000.
Via Robb Report