Professor’s watch collection is about much more than the time
Saturday 26th January 2013, 10:11AM GMT.
A COLLECTION of antique pocket watches spanning nearly 300 years has been donated to the Guernsey Museum and Art Gallery.
The watches were collected by engineer Professor Leonard Shaw, who lived in Guernsey from 1976 until his death aged 98 in 2010, and come from all corners of the world.
Museum director Dr Jason Monaghan said the public would enjoy viewing the collection.
‘They were a status symbol. Simply telling the time was not, I suspect, their primary function. The watches are individual works of art, exciting little objects.
‘People always like beautiful objects, and we want people to come and look at what we have got.’
The watches range in value, but the most expensive example is one purchased from King Farouk of Egypt, circa 1800, which is valued at between £50,000 and £80,000.
- View short videos of some of the watches in action below
Musical pocket watch. Quarter-repeating. Made of gold with frosted-gilt dial bearing Roman numerals. Case and bezel set with ruby paste. Unsigned but likely of Swiss manufacture. Circa 1820.
Large musical, open-faced pocket watch. Quarter-repeating with push pendant. Made of gold with engine-turned dial and case. With rose-gold chapter ring bearing Roman numerals. Made by ( Abraham-Louis ) Breguet et Fils. Likely Paris, France. Circa 1807 – 1823.
Large cylinder escapement, musical pocket watch. Open-faced and keywound. Quarter-repeating. Engine-turned case made of 18 carat gold with gilt movement within. Engine-turned gold dial set with Arabic numerals. Cuvette bearing signature of maker, Lepine of Paris. Circa 1800.
Large musical pocket watch. Quarter-repeating with full gilt plate movement. Gold case with split pearl and enamel decoration. Exquisitely painted floral enamelled scene on reverse of case. Likely of Swiss manufacture for the Chinese market. Circa 1810 – 1830.
Automaton pocket watch. Quarter-repeating with push pendant. Made of gold and exquisitely decorated. Moving parts include a girl on a swing, a working water pump and two puttis striking bells. Previously owned by King Farouk of Egypt. Circa 1790 – 1800.
Verge escapement, automaton pocket watch. Of open-faced skeleton design with push pendant. Made of gold. Quarter-repeating with small central white enamelled dial set with Arabic numerals. Unsigned but likely of Swiss or French manufacture. Circa 1800.