Victorian pendant watch

Sep 24, 2020. 19:32 UTC
Victorian pendant watch
United States of America

Acquired from

For sale

1 inch 3 eights diameter, 18 k gold, front and back enameled with flower motive on front with diamonds, enameled back. Has face with Roman numerals and second hand. I have the wind up key with it and it runs well and accurately . Has 15 jewels. The back inside has the following engraving; Togauss( at least I think) and Ancre. On the inner case on top of the movement has a serial number, 80180.


I inherited from my father

Answered within about 7 hours
Sep 25, 02:17 UTC
By David

Fair Market Value

$2,000 - $2,500 USD

Insurance Value

$4,500 USD
What does this mean?

Hello Paul,
Thank you for sending in this interesting pocket watch to for an appraisal. I shall try to help you with that tonight.
Art Nouveau, 18K yellow gold, black enameled and diamond, key wound and key set, savonette, hunting case, pocket/pendant watch, Unsigned, made in Switzerland, circa 1860-1870s
Client received this from his father.
CASE: 35mm diameter, four leaf, 18k yellow gold, with a gold ball push button pendant placed at the three relative to the dial (savonette) and opposite the case hinge. {This form of round ball pendant and bow was made during the third quarter of the 19th century in Switzerland.} Both back and front covers with black enamel centered by a gold enameled rosette on one cover and a floral arrangement on the other inset with approximately a dozen antique diamonds (quality not known). The edges of the covers have both enameled gold ornamentation in foliate form and small embossed floral designs. The interior of the covers reveal a “K18” gold mark within an oval cameo, but no evidence of the commonly seen Swiss gold hallmarks. The only mark I can see looks like a shield. It actually is a Neuchatel (Swiss canton) ‘Poincon de maître’ or that canton’s mark for the precious metal. It is rarely seen on gold cases, much more so on silver ones, but they were able to mark any item they wished in Neuchatel to verify the quality of the marking. (See history below) The cuvette or movement cover has fine engraved ornamentation around its periphery and engraved on the cuvette is “15 Joyaux, Ancre” (fifteen jewels with lever escapement). There is no makers name on this watch, but ‘joyaux’ in French means jewels and is rarely seen, usually they engraved ‘Rubis’. {I have seen other Swiss watches very much like this one with the same cuvette markings except with the watchmaker name “Robert, Geneve”. The list of Roberts in Switzerland who were watchmakers is beyond counting so I will just leave it at that, except to say that the movements are almost identical. I do not know if the cuvette carries a gold mark.
Dial White enameled dial with radial Roman numerals, closed minute track, with Arabic markers placed every five minutes around the edge of the dial. Sunken subsidiary seconds @6, wonderful skeletonized gold & steel trefoil Cathedral hands, and the dial unsigned.
Movement: Approximately 27/28 mm, matte gilt, LeCoultre calibre, flat straight finger bridges of parallel design with straight barrel bridge, 15 jeweled straight line anchor escapement, plain three-arm gilt balance, blued steel flat balance spring, Swiss style index regulator. Unsigned on dial, case and movement.
Case – Appears to be very good to excellent. I wish we knew more about the diamonds.
Dial – Superb, but unsigned.
Movement – Swiss traditional gear layout that was popular between 1840 and 1885
On 23 December 1880 Switzerland introduced a law requiring the hallmarking of all gold and silver watch cases. Hallmarking means that items made of precious metals are independently tested for fineness, and those that meet a legally defined standard are hallmarked. Swiss hallmarks do not carry a specific indication of the date when an item was hallmarked, but changes in the hallmarks over the years can give an idea of the period.
Standards for precious metals in Switzerland originated in Geneva in the 15th century, the first recorded regulation concerning the fineness and marking of silver was enacted by Bishop John of Brogny in the year 1424. Regulations were later introduced in the cantons of Neuchâtel and Schaffhausen, each having its own standards for gold and silver, its own system of testing and hallmarking, and its own unique set of marks. To begin with the standards and marking were controlled by the local Guilds. Markham's "Handbook to Foreign Hallmarks" says that an Assay Office was established in Geneva on 22 September 1815, and one in Neuchâtel in 1839. These assay offices were established by law, superseding the medieval Guild system of regulation.
These hallmarks were required on dishes, plates, bowls, candlesticks etc. They were not used on watch cases, although the canton of Neuchâtel could hallmark watch cases. There were no Swiss national legal standards for the fineness of gold or silver used for watch cases until the Precious Metals Control Act of 1880. Before this, Swiss gold watch cases were usually stamped by their manufacturer with the gold fineness, usually 14 carats, a popular standard on the continent, and silver watch cases were often simply marked "Fine Silver" or "Argent Fin", an unspecified standard of fineness with no legal definition but most likely 0·800. A mark stamped by a manufacturer is not a hallmark.
COMPARABLES:**N.B. (sold for $3450 in 2018) (sold for $750 in 2018) (sold for $1000 in 2013) (sold for 42250 in 2013) (signed and very fine pendant watch with many round and rose cut diamonds sold for $4500 in 2017) 9extraordinary sold for $4200 in 2018)
** (Although this is made later than your example it is close in design and probably the price as well. This one sold for $2250 in 2017)
** (diamond platinum and gold sold for $2000 in 2017)
Quite a fine and lovely adornment even when worn today, as it was made over a 125 years ago. I think there are questions to be answered still. The quality of the diamonds and the case tested to be certain it is 18k gold. The lack of any type of signature on the major parts of the case is always off-putting when bidding on or buying antique watches. However, because of its aesthetic and fine condition just as is, I believe a fair market value at auction today for this pendant watch would be in the range of $2000-$2500. Retail prices would be a bit higher. A wonderful family heirloom for you. I hope you continue to enjoy it and perhaps you might understand more about it now.
Thank you for choosing for your appraisal.
My best,

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