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Patek Philippe Vintage Very good Yellow gold 46mm Manual winding United Kingdom, London
Patek Philippe Open Face Vintage Yellow Gold Pocket Watch
£5,250
Free shipping
Professional dealer
714
UK
Good 50mm Manual winding United Kingdom, Westhoughton
IWC Peerless 9ct Rose Gold Case Pocket Watch
£650
Professional dealer
104
UK
Omega Good Rose gold 47mm Manual winding United Kingdom, Hertfordshire
TOP
Omega 14K Rose Gold Small Second Pocket Watch
£899
Free shipping
Professional dealer
121
UK
Rolex Cellini 3761/8 Very good Manual winding United Kingdom, Macclesfield
Rolex Cellini
£18,105
Free shipping
Professional dealer
55
UK
Good Yellow gold 32mmmm Manual winding United Kingdom, Doncaster
C1910 IWC INTERNATIONAL WATCH CO ANTIQUE SOLID 18K GOLD WATC...
£1,950
Professional dealer
 
UK
Audemars Piguet 25701PT.OO.0000XX.03 Very good Platinum 52mm Manual winding
Audemars Piguet Platinum Grand Complication Pocket Watch, ref....
£206,932
Professional dealer
76
US
Zenith ww1 9ct gold zenith pocket alarm watch Good Yellow gold 47mm Manual winding United Kingdom, East sussex
Zenith WW1 zenith pocket alarm watch
£1,999
Professional dealer
16
UK
IWC N/A Yellow gold 45mm Manual winding United Kingdom, Bishop's Stortford
IWC Vintage Turler Pocket Watch Yellow Gold N/A - COM786
£2,599
Free shipping
Professional dealer
383
UK
Waltham
Waltham pocket watch 18k 48mm watch
£3,281
Professional dealer
61
US
Ulysse Nardin Ulysse Nardin Miltary Pocket Watch Very good Silver 50mm Manual winding United Kingdom, London
Ulysse Nardin Silver British Military Issue Deck Pocket Watch
£2,950
Free shipping
Professional dealer
714
UK
Breguet Very good Red gold 50mm Manual winding
TOP
Breguet Rare Breguet pocket watch authentic gold 18k full hunter
£18,245
Private Seller
 
US
Fair Yellow gold 52mm Manual winding United Kingdom, BRISTOL
Johnson, Liverpool, 18K Gold Pocket Watch
£2,250
Free shipping
Professional dealer
6
UK
Patek Philippe 973J-001 New Yellow gold 44mm Manual winding United Kingdom, London
Patek Philippe Open Face Pocket Watch 44mm
£23,718
Professional dealer
1104
UK
Very good Yellow gold 32mm Manual winding United Kingdom, Doncaster
ANTIQUE BAUME & MERCIER SWISS C1910 SOLID 18K GOLD FOB POCKE...
£2,500
Professional dealer
 
UK
Vacheron Constantin 6346 Very good White gold 42mm Manual winding
Vacheron Constantin White Gold diamond bezel pocket watch
£4,139
Professional dealer
76
US
Ulysse Nardin Ulysse nardin 18k mint pocket watch Very good Yellow gold Manual winding United Kingdom, East sussex
Ulysse Nardin Locle Suisse Antique 18K Solid Gold Pocket Watch
£3,500
Professional dealer
16
UK
Longines 2394772 Very good Yellow gold Manual winding
Longines 4 Grands Prix
£3,988
Free shipping
Professional dealer
50
US
Very good 43mm
Jules Jurgensen pocket watch 14k 43mm watch
£3,461
Professional dealer
61
US
Vintage Pocket Watch Very good Silver 51mm Manual winding United Kingdom, London
Vintage Pocket Watch Double Sided Chronograph Vintage
£475
Free shipping
Professional dealer
714
UK
IWC Serial no 2151250 Fair 50mm Manual winding United Kingdom, Leicestershire.
IWC Pocket Watch, Sultanate Of Oman
£10,000
Private Seller
 
UK
Very good Yellow gold 48mm Manual winding United Kingdom, BRISTOL
18K Gold Half-Quarter Repeating Pocket Watch
£4,850
Free shipping
Professional dealer
6
UK
Patek Philippe 972/1J-010 New Yellow gold 44mm Manual winding United Kingdom, London
Patek Philippe Open Face Pocket Watch 44mm
£24,539
Professional dealer
1104
UK
Very good Steel 47mm Manual winding United Kingdom, Doncaster
STUNNING STEEL CASED VINTAGE 1974 SWISS LONGINES EXCELLENT C...
£650
Professional dealer
 
UK
Union Glashütte Fair Rose gold Manual winding
TOP
Union Glashütte Antique 14K Rose Gold Pocket Watch '' Working...
£607
Free shipping
Professional dealer
860
NL
Giuliano Mazzuoli MPW01 Unworn Steel 27mm Quartz
Giuliano Mazzuoli Manometrino Stainless Steel Pocket Watch
£865
Professional dealer
126
US
Cartier Very good Yellow gold 44mm Manual winding
Cartier Antique Cartier Solid 18K Gold Open Face Pocket Double...
£6,772
Professional dealer
768
US
Patek Philippe 983J-001 Very good 48mm Manual winding
Patek Philippe Hunter Pocket Watch 983J-001 18k 48mm watch
£31,378
Professional dealer
61
US
Very good Yellow gold 58mm Manual winding United Kingdom, London
Unbranded Open Face Musical Quarter Repeater Antique Yellow...
£6,250
Free shipping
Professional dealer
714
UK
Good White gold 44mm Manual winding United Kingdom, Leigh-on-Sea
E. Howard & Co 14 Kt/Carat White Gold Open Face Pocket Watch c...
£800
Private Seller
 
UK
Patek Philippe 89578 Very good Rose gold 46mm Manual winding
Patek Philippe 18k Rose Gold Pocket Watch 89578 Very Rare...
£6,769
Professional dealer
238
US
Ulysse Nardin Marine Chronometer Manufacture 1186-126/61 New Rose gold 43mm Automatic
Ulysse Nardin Marine Chronometer Manufacture 43 Unworn $30K...
£12,788
Professional dealer
102
US
Patek Philippe Good Yellow gold 34mmmm Manual winding United Kingdom, Doncaster
C1874 Patek Philippe solid 18k enamelled demi hunter pocket...
£4,295
Professional dealer
 
UK
M35352: Vintage 1890's Minute Repeater
£9,406
Professional dealer
165
US
Giuliano Mazzuoli MPWPGM02 Unworn Steel 27mm Quartz
Giuliano Mazzuoli Manometrino Stainless Steel Black PVD Pocket...
£903
Professional dealer
126
US
Tiffany Very good Yellow gold 35mm Manual winding
Tiffany Antique Tiffany & Co 18K Gold Pearl Diamond Triple...
£5,267
Professional dealer
768
US
Very good 54.5mm Manual winding
Jules Jurgensen pocket watch 18k 55mm watch
£5,832
Professional dealer
61
US
Cartier Cartier Very good Yellow gold 38mm Manual winding United Kingdom, London
Cartier Yellow Gold Pendant Fob Watch
£3,750
Free shipping
Professional dealer
714
UK
Audemars Piguet 2973 Very good Yellow gold 53mm Manual winding United Kingdom, Wood Green
Audemars Piguet 3 hammers carillon minute repeater 18ct solid...
£7,525
Private Seller
 
UK
Vacheron Constantin Fair Yellow gold 30mm Manual winding
Vacheron Constantin Open Face 18K Yellow Gold Pocket Watch
£1,504
Professional dealer
163
US
Rolex Very good Rose gold 50mm Manual winding
Rolex 50mm 9ct Rose Gold Open Face Pocket Watch , c.1940s...
£7,224
Professional dealer
766
US
Good Yellow gold 32mm Manual winding United Kingdom, Doncaster
CIRCA 1870 VACHERON & CONSTANTIN SOLID 18K ENAMELLED FULL...
£3,800
Professional dealer
 
UK
Very good Yellow gold
34178: Patek 18k Yellow Gold Deck Watch
£12,792
Professional dealer
165
US
Patek Philippe 317818 Very good White gold 45.5mmmm Manual winding United Kingdom, London
Patek Philippe Pocket watchOpen Face
£8,200
Private Seller
 
UK
Omega Very good White gold 44mm Manual winding
Omega Vintage Men's Omega 585% 14K White Gold Silver 17J 44mm...
£1,129
Professional dealer
768
US
Philadelphia Watch Case Co. pocket watch 18k 44mm watch
£2,935
Professional dealer
61
US
Good Silver Manual winding United Kingdom, Wood Green
S.Smith & Son 9 Strand London Smith and Son
£600
Private Seller
 
UK
Hermès Slim d'Hermès Hermes Slim d'Hermes Panthere EP2.990A Very good White gold 45mm Automatic United Kingdom, London
Hermès White Gold Slim d'Hermes Panthere Pocket Watch EP2.990A
£17,500
Free shipping
Professional dealer
714
UK
Audemars Piguet 43894 Very good Yellow gold 54mm Manual winding United Kingdom, Wood Green
Audemars Piguet English market
£4,966
Private Seller
 
UK
7335 Very good Yellow gold 45mm Manual winding United Kingdom, Wood Green
Klaftenberger Quarter minute repeater solid gold pocket watch
£4,966
Private Seller
 
UK
Fair Yellow gold 45mm Manual winding United Kingdom, Doncaster
VERY RARE ANTIQUE ART DECO 1935 MAPPIN & WEBB SOLID 18K GOLD...
£4,400
Professional dealer
 
UK
Patek Philippe
Patek Philippe 35545: Patek Philippe Pocketwatch, Circa 1905
£4,515
Professional dealer
165
US
Very good Yellow gold Manual winding
American Watch Co.
£2,145
Professional dealer
247
US
Very good Yellow gold 49.3mm Manual winding
TOP
South Bend 16s American Pocket Watch
£395
Private Seller
 
US
246181
Agassiz pocket watch 246181 14k 44mm watch
£2,069
Professional dealer
61
US
283966 Very good Yellow gold Manual winding
NG Vintage Antique 14k 585 Solid Yellow Gold Pocket Watch
£978
Professional dealer
768
US
Pocket Watch Very good Yellow gold 55mm Manual winding United Kingdom, London
Full Hunter Yellow Gold Minute Repeating Calendar Pocket Watch
£5,750
Free shipping
Professional dealer
UK
Patek Philippe Very good Yellow gold
Patek Philippe attributed French Art Nouveau 18 Karat Enamel...
£4,139
Free shipping
Professional dealer
36
US
Tiffany Very good Yellow gold 46mm Manual winding
Tiffany 18K YG - Agassiz movt for Tiffany - Circa 1910
£1,802
Professional dealer
161
US
Omega Very good 44mm Manual winding
Omega 14k Solid Gold Open Face Pocketwatch 44mm, c.1940s Swiss...
£1,881
Professional dealer
766
US
Yellow gold
P40761: 18k Pocketwatch Size 46mm
£2,634
Professional dealer
165
US

Pocket Watches: The Gentleman's Timepiece

Pocket watches have a large fan base. The timepieces range from cheap vintage models to extremely rare collector's pieces. World-famous manufacturers such as Patek Philippe have produced the most extraordinary pocket watches.


Highlights

  • Large variety of vintage pocket watches
  • Prices ranging from a few hundred euros to millions
  • New models with mechanical or quartz calibers
  • A. Lange & Söhne pocket watches are especially sought after by collectors
  • Available with a chronograph function, perpetual calendar, or minute repeater

Pocket Watches for Men and Women

Pocket watches have been beloved for centuries, especially amongst collectors and watch enthusiasts. Wristwatches almost made the pocket watch completely obsolete in the 20th century. Wearing a watch on your wrist is simply more comfortable for most people. Originally, it was predominantly men who used pocket watches. In order to not lose the watch, it was secured with a chain. There was a spring ring or clip at the end of the chain, which you could attach to a buttonhole. Men usually carried their pocket watches in their vest pockets , though they kept them in their pants or jacket pockets as well. Women often attached their pocket watches to a chain and wore them as necklaces.

Manufacturers such as Tissot, Regent, or Dugena continue to produce affordable pocket watches. These are powered by mechanical or quartz movements. The number of pre-owned pocket watches available is much larger. The most highly sought-after models are vintage watches from the German manufacturer A. Lange & Söhne. Patek Philippe, one of the most renowned watch manufacturers in the world, is known for their especially intricate pocket watches. The Graves Supercomplication and Calibre 89 were the most intricate pocket watches for decades.


Buying Advice

If you're searching for a pocket watch, you have the choice between countless models. Prices range from a few hundred to a few million euros for very rare, intricate models. Apprentice watches are particularly special watches. They were made by watchmaking apprentices towards the end of one's apprenticeship, making them "journeyman's pieces." Watches from the 19th or first half of the 20th century are extremely coveted amongst collectors. Since there is only one of each watch, they're extremely scarce, and you should accordingly plan to spend at least 30,000 euros for such a rare piece.

A less expensive entry into the world of pocket watches would be a model from Regent, Dugena, or Tissot. Pre-owned Tissot pocket watches cost less than 500 euros, although their gold watches can cost around 2,500 euros. All three manufacturers currently offer pocket watches in their portfolios. You can also find pre-owned pocket watches from the Swiss manufacturer Omega at affordable prices, sometimes for less than 200 euros. However, gold models can cost up to 4,000 euros.

Pre-owned pocket watches from the International Watch Company (IWC) can be purchased for around 800 euros. Gold models, however, are available for 25,000 euros. The prices for vintage pocket watches from Patek Philippe start at around 3,500 euros. However, there are also models that cost nearly one million euros. The Graves Supercomplication , a special order pocket watch for the American banker Henry Graves, Jr., sold at a Sotheby's auction in 2014 for 23.2 million Swiss francs (CHF), making it one of the most expensive watches in the world. The Patek Philippe 89 is slightly less expensive, although it's still one of the most intricate pocket watches ever produced. In 2009, it sold for around $5 million at an Antiquorum auction.


The History of Pocket Watches

Pocket watches have been around since the 15th century. The invention of the spring drive made pocket watches possible, as it enabled the entire watch movement to be miniaturized. Before then, large grandfather clocks were powered by weights attached to chains which wound the movement. The oldest known watch with a spring drive dates back to 1430 . It features a fusee, which equalized the uneven pull of the mainspring. This watch belonged to Philip the Good, Duke of Burgundy, and is on display at the Germanisches Nationalmuseum (Germanic National Museum) in Nuremberg.

Peter Henlein, a locksmith from Nuremburg, was one of the first to use a spring drive together with an escape mechanism in a wearable watch. He was able to get the watch down to pocket watch size using this construction, and the shape of the timepiece resembled a can . One of these models is on display at the Germanisches Nationalmuseum in Nuremburg. The German town of Nuremberg was the center of watchmaking in the 15th century. Historians know it as the "Silicon Valley of the Middle Ages" due to the many inventions made in the town.

These can-shaped watches, which were most likely carried in bags, eventually developed into wearable watches fashioned onto chains. Since the first portable watches still weren't very accurate, they only had an hour hand. This changed in the mid-17th century when better escapement systems were developed, resulting in portable watches with both hour and minute hands.

The majority of older pocket watches are unsigned, as adding company names and logos wasn't common practice until the 19th century. Sometimes you're only able to tell the origin of a watch based on its construction, design, or decorations.


Pocket Watch Cases

In the 16th century, pocket watch cases were often spherical or box-shaped. Over time, the case developed into the common flat design we know today.

Pocket watches are classified as either Savonnette or Lépine, an important distinction. The Lépine version is named for the French watchmaker Jean-Antoine Lépine. In this construction, the seconds display, winding stem, and crown are all in line with each other. Lépine pocket watches have no spring cover, and thanks to their construction, they're especially flat. This makes them well suited as tailcoat watches. Savonnette watches, on the other hand, have a spring cover protecting the dial and watchglass which can be opened by a push-piece. The term "Savonnette" comes from French and means "little bar of soap." Savonnette pocket watches have the seconds display at six o'clock, and the crown is on the side at three o'clock. This construction makes it easier to hold and use: You can hold the pocket watch in your right hand and use your thumbs to operate the spring cover push-piece and read the time.

Pocket Watch Cases

  • Lépine: Crown, winding stem, seconds hand in line with the winding stem, no spring cover
  • Savonnette: Seconds display at six o'clock, crown on the side, spring cover for protection

Intricate Pocket Watches

Pocket watches can do much more than just show the time. The most intricate pocket watches come from the Swiss manufacturers Patek Philippe, Breguet, and Vacheron Constantin.


The Graves Supercomplication: 24 Complications

With a total of 24 complications, the Graves Supercomplication held the record for the most intricate pocket watch for decades. It features a perpetual calendar , double chronograph for timing intervals, and astronomical displays . The watch shows the normal time, sidereal time, the sunrise and sunset time, and the starry sky over New York City.

The Graves Supercomplication was custom made for the New York banker Henry Graves, Jr. , a passionate watch collector and Patek Philippe fan. The American car manufacturer James Ward Packard was also a lover of rare Patek Philippe watches. Both men commissioned many watches from Patek Philippe with the goal of beating one another in acquiring the most intricate timepiece. The competition ended with Henry Graves, Jr.'s Graves Supercomplication. Originally commissioned in 1925, the watch was finally completed seven years later in 1932. It took a further 12 months for the watch to reach Graves. Since Packard died in 1928, he was unable to commission any more pocket watches. Therefore, it remains a mystery whether Patek could have made an even more intricate watch than the Graves Supercomplication in the early 1930s.


Patek Philippe's Calibre 89 with 33 Complications

Patek Philippe's Calibre 89 overtook the Graves Supercomplication as the most intricate watch in 1989. With a total of 33 complications, the Calibre 89 set a new record. Among its complications are a double chronograph, perpetual calendar , a moon phase and age display, and a second time zone display . There are also many astronomical displays on the back side of the watch. The pocket watch also has acoustic complications such as a grand and petite sonnerie, a minute repeater, and an alarm function. Patek Philippe only produced four Calibre 89 pocket watches.


Vacheron Constantin's 57 Complications

In 2015, the Swiss manufacturer Vacheron Constantin set a new record. Their pocket watch, reference number 57260, has 57 complications. Vacheron Constantin produced this watch for a wealthy, anonymous customer. The watch features many calendars: a Gregorian perpetual calendar, a Hebrew perpetual calendar, an astronomical calendar function, and a professional business calendar based on the ISO 8601 standard.


A Royal Pocket Watch: Breguet Marie Antoinette

The Breguet pocket watch Grande Complication No. 1160 is, like its predecessor the No. 160, a rarity. An unknown admirer of Marie Antoinette commissioned the watch in 1783 when Breguet was the purveyor to the royal French court. Marie Antoinette was known to be a fan of Breguet. The watch was meant to showcase the watchmaking know-how of the time, and gold was used in lieu of other metals when possible. The automatic watch features a perpetual calendar, minute repeater, and a power reserve display. It also displays the equation of time, the daily deviation between the true and mean solar times. The mean solar time is the time we use day in, day out. Breguet finished the watch in 1827, 44 years after it was commissioned. Marie Antoinette had already died 34 years earlier.

The No. 160 pocket watch was on display in a Jerusalem museum until 1983. It vanished without a trace and remained lost for 24 years, until it reappeared suddenly in 2007. Nicolas G. Hayek, the founder of the Swatch Group, commissioned Breguet to remake the No. 160 in 2004. Since the original was still missing at the time, the watchmakers had to reconstruct it using old drawings and reference documents.

Abraham-Louis Breguet was the founder of the manufacturer and is considered a genius master watchmaker. He is the inventor of the tourbillon, a complication which minimizes gravity-related deviations and ensures the watch runs precisely.


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