Jaeger-LeCoultre - The Geneva Watch Auction: FIVE Geneva Friday, May 12, 2017 | Phillips

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  • Manufacturer: Jaeger-LeCoultre
    Year: circa 1968
    Reference No: E859
    Movement No: 1'991'374
    Case No: 1'133'049 further stamped 5-68
    Model Name: Memovox Polaris
    Material: Stainless steel
    Calibre: Automatic, cal. K825, 17 jewels
    Bracelet/Strap: Tropical rubber strap
    Clasp/Buckle: Stainless steel
    Dimensions: 42mm. Diameter
    Signed: Case, dial and movement signed
    Literature: "mstanga" has dedicated a 64 page booklet to the Polaris E859

  • Catalogue Essay

    Jaeger-LeCoultre's history and expertise in dive watches with alarm is appreciated by collectors.

    Their famed “Memovox” (voice of memory) model was introduced to the market in 1950. The firm continued to expand this successful line, and in 1959 introduced one of their most unique watches, the Memovox Polaris - an oversized, automatic waterproof diver’s wristwatch with alarm. This was a unique take on diver watches where the dive time was not set by a rotating bezel but rather the diver was reminded that it was time to go back up via the alarm and vibrations on the case. The firm created a patented case back, which optimized the alarm’s sound transmission underwater. The outer case, with its 16 holes, allowed for the alarm tone to be heard, while the inner case sealed and protected the movement. The watch featured three crowns, each with a cross hatch pattern: the first for time setting, the second for the inner bezel for dive timing, and the third to rotate the inner disc with arrow to set the alarm.

    The original Polaris E859 was made in 1714 examples, and in 2009, Jaeger-LeCoultre released a modern version called "Tribute to Polaris" in recognition of the growing popularity of the original vintage model. It was intended for use in a rugged and active environment, and therefore the present lot is a rare find with its lovely overall condition. In addition to its dramatic case and charismatic dial, the watch delights with its distinctive, loud and clear alarm.

    The present lot would be a lovely addition to the collection of any dive watch aficionado.

  • Artist Biography


    Swiss • 1833

    Not all companies in the watchmaking field have been able to stand the test of time quite like Jaeger LeCoultre, also known as the "watchmaker's watchmaker." Founded in 1833 by Antoine LeCoultre and originally named LeCoutre, the firm provided watchmaking's top brands, such as Patek Philippe, Vacheron Constantin and Audemars Piguet, the high-grade, unfinished mechanical movements with which they completed their watches.

    In the early 1900s, Cartier's watch supplier Edmond Jaeger sought out LeCoultre's help in creating the world's thinnest watches. The collaboration resulted in the creation of Cartier's earliest Tank and Santos watches, all housed with LeCoultre movements. The duo decided to merge in 1937, and the firm officially became the Jaeger-LeCoultre brand by which collectors know and adore it today. Some of the firm's most significant and important timepieces include the Reverso, the Memovox, the Atmos clock and, among modern watches, their Master Complications.

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Ref. E859
A fine and rare stainless steel diver's alarm wristwatch

circa 1968
42mm. Diameter
Case, dial and movement signed

CHF15,000 - 25,000 

Sold for CHF18,750

Contact Specialist
Alexandre Ghotbi
+41 22 317 81 89

The Geneva Watch Auction: FIVE

Geneva Auctions 13 – 14 May 2017