Longines - START-STOP-RESET: 88 Epic Stainless Steel Chronographs Geneva Friday, May 13, 2016 | Phillips
  • Manufacturer: Longines
    Year: 1943
    Reference No: 4974, batch number 22’184
    Movement No: 6’398’716
    Case No: 2
    Model Name: “Tre Tacche”
    Material: Stainless steel
    Calibre: Manual, cal. 13ZN, 18 jewels
    Bracelet/Strap: Leather
    Clasp/Buckle: Stainless steel buckle
    Dimensions: 37.5mm diameter
    Signed: Case, dial and movement signed
    Accessories: Accompanied by an Extract from the Archives confirming the present watch was manufactured on March 24, 1943, and delivered to Ostersetzer in Italy.
    Literature: For a similar example see John Goldberger Longines Watches, pp. 180/181.

  • Catalogue Essay

    Longines is considered to be a pioneer in the chronograph evolution. The present reference 4974 is an exceptional example of an early 1940s chronograph wristwatch. It boasts a 37.5mm case diameter – substantially oversized for the time period in which it was created, and especially appreciated in today’s market. Powering the watch is the widely acclaimed caliber 13ZN, which was the first serially produced movement to incorporate a fly-back function.

    Longines initially intended for these wristwatches to be used as tools for military personnel and aviators. Watches fitted with the caliber 13ZN
    were housed in cases ranging in size from 34mm to 38mm, and were produced with either snapback or screw-down casebacks. The screw-down casebacks, as found on the present lot, are highly desirable and nicknamed “tre tacche” in Italian. The literal translation in English is three notches, and refers to the three grooves carved out on the casebacks, permitting them to be screwed down. The inside caseback is stamped ‘2’ matching with the number found on the underside of the case’s lug.

    The present Longines satisfies collectors with its alluring gold-colored print against the black lacquer dial. This example has survived in particularly good, original condition. Not only is this timepiece an outstanding collectible, but also a practical, elegant watch suitable for everyday wear.

  • Artist Biography


    Swiss • 1832

    Auguste Agassiz founded Longines in 1832, and today is considered to be a pioneer in the evolution of the chronograph. During the 1930s, Longines' chronograph wristwatches were used as tools for wartime aviators and military personnel. As one of Switzerland's largest manufacturers, Longines was an important supplier of wristwatches to militaries of multiple nations.

    Today, they are owned by the Swatch Group and produce wristwatches for both men and women. Their vintage wristwatches continue to grow in desirability amongst collectors. Some of the most sought-after models include such oversized chronographs as the Lindbergh Hour Angle designed by Charles Lindbergh, Chronostop, Tre Tacche, A-7, Tasti a Spillo and Doppia Lanchetta.

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Ref. 4974, batch number 22’184
A very rare and attractive stainless steel fly-back chronograph wristwatch with black lacquered dial and gold-colored tachometer scale.

37.5mm diameter
Case, dial and movement signed

CHF50,000 - 100,000 

Sold for CHF93,750

Contact Specialist
Livia Russo
+41 22 317 81 86

START-STOP-RESET: 88 Epic Stainless Steel Chronographs

Geneva Auction 14 May 2016