An exquisite, important and most probably unique chronograph wristwatch with black dial displaying white Arabic-Indic numerals, and bracelet

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  • Manufacturer: Rolex
    Year: Circa 1974
    Reference No: 6263 "The Arabian Knight" inside case back stamped 6265 and 3’655’340
    Case No: 3’655’340
    Model Name: Cosmograph
    Material: Stainless steel
    Calibre: Manual, cal.727, 17jewels
    Bracelet/Strap: Stainless steel Rolex Oyster bracelet, end links stamped 571, max. length 195mm
    Clasp/Buckle: Stainless steel Rolex deployant clasp
    Dimensions: 37.5mm diameter
    Signed: Case, dial, movement and bracelet signed
    Literature: The present watch is prominently illustrated in Ultimate Rolex Daytona by Pucci Papaleo Editions, pages 428 to 431.

  • Catalogue Essay

    Rolex has created some of the most surprising, beautiful and unusual watches for the Arab States in the Gulf. The manufacture's custom pieces date back to the 1950s, when Rolex fitted Arabic discs to the most luxurious Day-Date watches.

    Most probably unique, this watch is unlike anything the market has ever seen before. In lieu of white gold markers are white Arabic-Indic numerals printed directly on the black dial. Having never appeared at auction, it has only previously been published in literature.

    Throughout the years, Rolex has cultivated and sustained its successful relationship with the Arab States by producing a multitude of special order watches for the region. This watch was most certainly made upon special order, very likely for a member of the Middle Eastern royal family. The watch bears a 3.655 million serial number and is one among a batch of known watches delivered to the Middle East.

    Manufactured by Singer, this dial is made in accordance with all the production techniques and quality standards of the time. Attention should be given to the absence of traditional holes for the hour markers. Apart from first series dials stamped “Singer Brevet AV” that feature glued numerals, dials with the single designation “Singer” are designed with holes.

    The absence proves that this dial was never meant to have applied indexes and is also testament to its originality. Most importantly, the dial feet have never been broken off or re-soldered, meaning this dial was never altered. Thus, it cannot be characterized as a sample, test or prototype. Rather, it was made and destined for an actual watch reserved for a client.

    The visual effect of the bi-colour is dazzling and compelling. The “Sigma” designation at 6 o’clock refers to the white gold Rolex crown at 12 o’clock. Most interestingly, the design and font of the Arabic-Indic numerals is incredibly similar to a modern Rolex production watch – the platinum Day-Date 40 with Arabic-Indic numerals sold only by Middle East retailers.

  • Maker Bio

    Rolex

    Swiss • 1905

    Founded in 1905 England by Hans Wilsdorf and Alfred Davis as Wilsdorf & Davis, it soon became known as the Rolex Watch Company in 1915, moving its headquarters to Geneva in 1919. Like no other company, the success of the wristwatch can be attributed to many of Rolex's innovations that made them one of the most respected and well-known of all luxury brands. These innovations include their famous "Oyster" case — the world's first water resistant and dustproof watch case, invented in 1926 — and their "Perpetual" — the first reliable self-winding movement for wristwatches launched in 1933. They would form the foundation for Rolex's Datejust and Day-Date, respectively introduced in 1945 and 1956, but also importantly for their sports watches, such as the Explorer, Submariner and GMT-Master launched in the mid-1950s.

    One of its most famous models is the Cosmograph Daytona. Launched in 1963, these chronographs are without any doubt amongst the most iconic and coveted of all collectible wristwatches. Other key collectible models include their most complicated vintage watches, including references 8171 and 6062 with triple calendar and moon phase, "Jean Claude Killy" triple date chronograph models and the Submariner, including early "big-crown" models and military-issued variants.

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Rolex

Ref. 6263 "The Arabian Knight" inside case back stamped 6265 and 3’655’340
An exquisite, important and most probably unique chronograph wristwatch with black dial displaying white Arabic-Indic numerals, and bracelet

Circa 1974
37.5mm diameter
Case, dial, movement and bracelet signed

Estimate
CHF1,500,000 - 3,000,000 

sold for CHF1,932,500

Contact Specialist
Tiffany To
Head of Sale
+41 22 317 96 63
tto@phillips.com

Daytona Ultimatum

Geneva Auction 12 May 2018