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  • Manufacturer: Jaeger-LeCoultre
    Year: 1968
    Reference No: E859
    Movement No: 1'991'884
    Case No: 1'128'196 further stamped 5-68
    Model Name: Memovox Polaris
    Material: Stainless steel
    Calibre: Automatic, cal. K825, 17 jewels
    Bracelet/Strap: Leather
    Clasp/Buckle: Stainless steel pin buckle
    Dimensions: 42mm. Diameter
    Signed: Case, dial and movement signed
    Accessories: Accompanied by Jaeger-LeCoultre Extract from the Archives confirming production of the present lot in 1968.

  • Catalogue Essay

    Jaeger-LeCoultre’s expertise in alarm watches doesn’t need an introduction as the brand has a long tradition in manufacturing such wristwatches. Their famed “Memovox” (voice of memory) model was introduced to the market in 1950, however in an era where sports diving was gaining more and more popularity the brand decided to go one step beyond and create an oversized, automatic waterproof divers' wristwatch with alarm. In 1959 the Momovox Polaris was born, today one of the most coveted and desirable diving watches from that period.

    Jaeger-LeCoultre’s goal was to offer both visual (inner bezel) and auditory (alarm) timers for the dive. To do so 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 Polaris 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.
    The present model was made for the European market as indicated with the full Jaeger-LeCoultre brand name on the dial whereas the simplified “LeCoultre” brand was used on dials of models intended for the American market.

    The dial of the present model is turning a pleasing and charismatic “tropical” brown perfectly complemented by the cream indexes and hands. In overall appealing condition this Memovox Polaris is accompanied with a fitted box and open guarantee papers.

  • Artist Biography

    Jaeger-LeCoultre

    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 very rare stainless steel divers' wristwatch with centre seconds, date and alarm and brown "tropical" dial

1968
42mm. Diameter
Case, dial and movement signed

Estimate
CHF15,000 - 25,000 
€12,900-21,600
$15,500-25,800

Sold for CHF18,750

Contact Specialist
Alexandre Ghotbi
+41 22 317 81 89
[email protected]

The Geneva Watch Auction: SIX

Geneva Auctions 11 - 12 November 2017