Advanced Search

Quarter-repeating, Musical Watch

Not on view

Quarter-repeating, Musical Watch

Artist: Aubert & Fils (active Geneva, Switzerland)

Date: c. 1820
Medium: Yellow, green, and rose gold; enamel
76.2 x 54 x 15.9 mm
Signed: Case (on enamel portrait): "Kantz"
Markings: Movement: "4991" Cuvette: "Aubert & Fils à Genève, No. 4991"
Credit Line: Proctor Collection, Thomas R. Proctor Watch Collection
Object number: PC. 379
Text Entries

The neoclassical style influence watch decoration, especially enameled miniatures of military officers. On this watch, the bust of a soldier is portrayed wearing a blue uniform with red collar and gold braid and epaulettes. The inside of the case is counterenameled with a coat of arms. It features a coronet atop a shield with a laurel branch on either side, which suggests that the soldier was a member of the nobility. Most miniature paintings on watches are not signed. Yet on this watch, Kantz, the enamellist, has written his name along the edge of the painting to the left of the officer’s shoulder; nothing, however, is currently known about him.

The dial is finished with the same attention to detail as the case, with beautifully applied decorations. These include a floral motif at the center of the dial in rose and green gold, a peripheral border of rose-gold four- and five-petaled flowers with green-gold leaves, and raised Roman chapters. In addition, when the piston pendant with a lock on the band is switched, the watch plays music.