Breguet - The Hong Kong Watch Auction: EIGHT Hong Kong Monday, May 27, 2019 | Phillips

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  • Manufacturer: Breguet
    Year: 1936
    Case No: 3718
    Material: Gilt metal
    Dimensions: 101mm x 67mm x 60mm
    Signed: Case signed and numbered Breguet 3718
    Literature: For a history bird boxes and other examples see Flights of Fancy - Mechanical Singing Birds, Sharon & Christian Bailly

  • Catalogue Essay

    These Breguet bird boxes are extremely rare with fewer than 30 known and they were most likely produced only by special order. The boxes appeared in two series, with the first from the 1930s until the 1940s and the second from the mid-1950s to the 1960s. The bird boxes were available in two sizes, a large version like the present example featuring the bird and secret compartment, and a smaller size. The movement is signed AB France for Bontems, the legendary maker known for their technical skills and authenticity of the bird song.

    In lovely original condition, this very rare bird box is a wonderful expression of the technical skills of the House of Breguet. According to the archival information from Breguet, the Singing Bird "BREGUET N° 3718" was made by Bontems for Breguet in June 1936. The piece was sold on April 23, 1937 to Mr ERSTEIN for the sum of 2,300 French Francs.

  • Artist Biography


    Swiss • 1775

    Established in 1775 by Abraham Louis Breguet, widely considered the greatest watchmaker of all time, the storied brand continues to thrive in the modern era, creating exceptional high-end watches as the Swatch Group's premier prestige brand. Some of the most important and lasting inventions in watchmaking are attributed to Abraham Louis Breguet, including the tourbillon, shock resistance and the use of hammers and gongs employed in nearly all minute repeating watches made since.

    Eighteenth and nineteenth century Breguet pocketwatches are especially sought-after by collectors, and many of them were made for the elite of European society, including Napoléon and Marie Antoinette. Key wristwatches from the twentieth century include oversized dress watches, two-register chronographs, triple calendars and Type XX aviator's chronographs made for the French military and civilians.

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A very rare and highly attractive gilt metal singing bird box with automated drawer and winding key

101mm x 67mm x 60mm
Case signed and numbered Breguet 3718

HK$190,000 - 280,000 

Sold for HK$225,000

Contact Specialist

Thomas Perazzi
Head of Watches, Asia
+852 2318 2001

The Hong Kong Watch Auction: EIGHT

Hong Kong Auction 28 May 2019