POCKET WATCHES WACHERON & CONSTANTIN VACHERON & CONSTANTIN
The Swiss watch Vasheron & Constantine is considered one of the most expensive and prestigious in the world. In the second half of the 18th century, Switzerland, from a country full of coups and military mercenaries, smoothly transferred to a country with rapidly developing industry, where one of the main areas of industry was the production of watches.
Switzerland always paid great attention to watchmaking, so in 1601 a special guild of watchmakers was formed in Geneva, and at the end of the 18th century there could already count about 200 watch shops and more than 800 watchmakers. Jean-Marc Washeron, had to work in conditions of strong competition, which served as a tendency to constantly improve the quality and perfection of the characteristics of his watches, and already in 1770, Jean-Marc Washeron released the first pocket watch “Complication” with a complicated clockwork, which served as a kind of statement on the Swiss watch market about outstanding creative abilities.
And in the 1779s, Jean-Marc Vasheron began producing pocket and wrist watches with the so-called “guilloche” case, that is, the Vasheron workshop began producing watches with special engraving, which gave the watch a special elegance. Thanks to the “guilloche” case of a pocket watch, the watch of the Washeron workshop has become popular in aristocratic circles of the country.
In 1798, Abraham Washeron took over the leadership of the watch business from his father. And in the same year, not only the aristocratic strata of society, but also the French imperial court, not excluding Napoleon Bonaparte and his wives, became the clients of the Wacheron workshop. In 1810, Jacques-Barthelemy Wacheron, the grandson of the founder of the company, begins to develop foreign markets and organizes export deliveries. The growing production of watches can no longer be controlled by one leader, and in 1819 a partnership agreement was signed with Francois Constantine, and the company was given a new name: Vasheron and Constantine, a new name takes the company to a new level.
The company begins to develop new markets, while not bypassing the Russian Empire, Konstantin sold pocket watches with a minute repeater to Prince Potemkin. Over time, François Constantine, formulated the basic principle of the watch company Vasheron & Constantine: “Strive to do better, if possible, but it is always possible!”.
You can only be surprised at the assortment of the company Vasheron & Konstantin, they produce: jewelry watches with enamel coating and decorated with precious stones, pocket and wrist watches with repeaters, watches with a special mechanism that allows you to compensate for the effect of gravity on accuracy. In the 20th century, Vaseron & Konstantin turned out to be the leader among developers who used “non-magnetic” palladium, bronze and gold in the watch mechanism, which allowed the watch to display time accurate to the second without any additional adjustment.
Despite the unstable economic situation of the 1930s, Fashion House Vasheron and Konstantin still continues to produce luxury pocket watches. A real masterpiece of such watches was made especially for the King of Egypt – pocket watch No. 415810, which was equipped with a perpetual calendar, moon phase indicator, minute repeater, large and small battle, split chronograph, alarm clock, power reserve indicator of the main mechanism and battle mechanism.
The pocket watch, which was intended for the King of Egypt, is considered the most complex ever produced by Vasheron & Konstantin. And their production took about five years. In 1994, the watch was sold at the Antiquorum auction for 1,155,000 Swiss francs, which was a very large sum at that time.
1997 was a full series of events for the company, the company was engaged in the production of five collections: Overseas – a sports line of the “luxury” class, Les Historiques – a line of models that reproduces the most famous models of the company in the updated version, Les Joailleries / Absolues – a “jewelry” series, Les Essentielles are models of classic design and, Les Complications are watches of high complexity.
In the same year, Vaseron & Konstantin, in honor of the 850th anniversary of Moscow, released a series of pocket watches in a gold case with the coat of arms of the Russian capital. Watches of this series, which amounted to only 25 units, were distributed through an official representative at a price of $ 10,000 for each product.
Nowadays, the watches of the famous House of Vasheron and Constantine are still popular. This was confirmed at an auction in 2005 in New York, when Vaseron & Konstantin celebrated its 250th anniversary, international collectors showed a keen interest in the collections of this brand. During the auction, which was attended by collectors from around the world, there was a genuine interest in the models for sale by the Swiss company Wacheron and Constantine.