A new auction world record was set for a Breguet watch at Christie's Geneva auction of Important Watches on May 14.
The Breguet & Fils, Paris, No. 2667, an 18K gold precision watch featuring two movements, made $4.7m, more than trebling its high estimate.
"Montre plate à deux mouvements, sur le principe des chronomètres", to give the watch its full name, was originally bought in London in 1814 for 5,000 francs.
It was purchased at the auction by the Breguet Museum in Paris, as was an 18K half quarter repeater, equation of time watch with annual calendar, which made $2.8m - the second highest price ever achieved for a Breguet at auction.
The sale is further confirmation of the considerable popularity of the Abraham-Louis Breguet (1747‐1823) name with buyers. He designed timepieces for Queen Marie-Antoinette, Napoleon I and the Queen of Naples, for whom he made the first wristwatch.
One piece remaining on the private market is a Patek Philippe 18K gold two crown world time wristwatch, reference 2523.
Featuring 24 hour indication and a cloisonné enamel dial displaying North America, it sold to an international collector for $3m, an auction world record for the 2523.
The sale made $32.7m in all, 29% up on the corresponding auction in 2011.
Aurel Bacs, the international head of Christie's watch department, commented on the striking demographics of the watch collecting sector.
"We welcomed an impressive depth of bidding with buyers from 42 countries, and eight different collectors represented in the top 10," he said.
"Breguet shone with two historical auction results paying testament to the genius of Abraham Louis Breguet, the most influential horological innovator of all time.
"Patek Philippe remains blue-chip for collectors while Vacheron Constantin, Audemars Piguet and Rolex set new standards by establishing record results and reaffirming their importance in today's collecting arena."
The auction follows four world records for Patek Philippe watches last month.
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