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  • Manufacturer: Patek Philippe
    Year: 1997
    Reference No: 3878J-001
    Movement No: 1’239’444
    Case No: 2'992'764
    Material: 18K yellow gold
    Calibre: Automatic, cal. 240 SQ, 27 jewels
    Bracelet/Strap: Leather
    Clasp/Buckle: 18K yellow gold Patek Philippe deployant clasp
    Dimensions: 31mm diameter
    Signed: Case, dial, movement and clasp signed
    Accessories: Accompanied by Patek Philippe Certificate of Origin dated 12th November 1998 and stamped Turgeon-Raine, leather folder, instruction manual, product literature, pouch, fitted presentation box and outer packaging. Further delivered with a Patek Philippe Extract from the Archives confirming the date of manufacture of the present timepiece in 1997 and its subsequent date of sale on 9th June 1998.

  • Catalogue Essay

    Patek Philippe’s exquisite reference 3878 was manufactured from 1981 until 2007. Made exclusively in 18K yellow gold, the model perfectly embodied the essence of the brand, and the aesthetic they seek to achieve. The highly chased and engraved movement became a work of art, with each bridge and plate exhibiting the brand’s exacting attention to detail and hand craftsmanship. The art of engraving has long been an important asset in the world of horology and Patek Philippe can be regarded as masters of the craft. Requiring extreme precision and skills, more than two hundred engravers were working in Geneva in the late eighteenth century, but their craft almost went extinct between 1970 and 1980. Fortunately, Patek Philippe, which had given work to these artisans from the outset, continued to do so when decorated watches were no longer in fashion, keeping this precious knowledge alive. This was Patek Philippe first self-winding skeletonized watch, and research indicates only approximately 500 examples were produced. In 2008, the model was replaced by the reference 5180/1 “Squelette” with a larger 39mm diameter case and white gold bracelet.

    The present reference 3878 is accompanied by the original Certificate of Origin and presentation box and is a masterpiece that allows the wearer to celebrate the artistry and horological excellence of Patek Philippe.

  • Artist Biography

    Patek Philippe

    Swiss • 1839

    Since its founding in 1839, this famous Geneva-based firm has been surprising its clientele with superbly crafted timepieces fitted with watchmaking's most prestigious complications. Traditional and conservative designs are found across Patek Philippe's watches made throughout their history — the utmost in understated elegance.

    Well-known for the Graves Supercomplication — a highly complicated pocket watch that was the world’s most complicated watch for 50 years — this family-owned brand has earned a reputation of excellence around the world. Patek's complicated vintage watches hold the highest number of world records for results achieved at auction compared with any other brand. For collectors, key models include the reference 1518, the world's first serially produced perpetual calendar chronograph, and its successor, the reference 2499. Other famous models include perpetual calendars such as the ref. 1526, ref. 3448 and 3450, chronographs such as the reference 130, 530 and 1463, as well as reference 1436 and 1563 split seconds chronographs. Patek is also well-known for their classically styled, time-only "Calatrava" dress watches, and the "Nautilus," an iconic luxury sports watch first introduced in 1976 as the reference 3700 that is still in production today.

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Ref. 3878J-001
A fine and rare yellow gold skeletonized wristwatch with Certificate of Origin and presentation box

1997
31mm diameter
Case, dial, movement and clasp signed

Estimate
HK$140,000 - 220,000 
€14,900-23,500
$17,900-28,200

Sold for HK$352,800

Contact Specialist

Thomas Perazzi
Head of Watches, Asia
+852 2318 2031
[email protected]

The Hong Kong Watch Auction: XII

Hong Kong Auctions 5-6 June 2021