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Abraham-Louis Breguet’s History


Breguet is a manufacturer of luxury watches, founded by Abraham Louis Breguet in Paris in 1775. Currently part of The Swatch Group, its timepieces are now (since 1976) produced in the Vallée de Joux in Switzerland. Breguet watches are often easily recognized for their coin-edge cases, guilloché dials and blue pomme hands.
Breguet was founded in 1775 by Abraham-Louis Breguet at the Quai de l’Horloge (Ile de la Cite, Paris) following his marriage to the daughter of a prosperous French bourgeois. Following his introduction to the court, whereupon Queen Marie-Antoinette grew fascinated by Breguet’s unique self-winding watch, Louis XVI bought several of his watches. Marie Antoinette commissioned the watch that was to contain every watch function known at that time, including the following: a clock, a perpetual calendar, a repeater, a thermometer, a chronograph, a power-reserve and a pare-chute.

Abraham Louis Breguet is probably greatest genius of watchmaking that ever lived. Inventor of numerous creations like the Breguet Spiral (nowadays used in every quality watch and wristwatch), the tourbillon or the whirlwind (device created to compensate the gravity influences in balance spring in pocket watches). Breguet created the first Grande Complication in the history of horology through the Marie-Antoinette wristwatch, that was commissioned by the French queen’s guard Monsieur de la Croizette with the order of being produced containing as much complications known and, them, made of gold. This watch was finished in 1827, meaning that neither the unfortunate queen (who was guillotined in 1793) nor the master watchmaker himself (Breguet died in 1823) ever saw the completed watch. The Marie-Antoinette was a self-winding watch with a perpetual calendar, equation of time indication and a minute repeater. It has disappeared since 1983 when it was stolen from the Jerusalem Institute of Islamic Art.

[Breguet Home Page]

Filed under: Abraham-Louis Breguet, Breguet History, Breguet Marie Antoinette, Luxury, Luxury Watch, luxury watches, Marie Antoinette Breguet, Timepiece, Watch, Watches, wristwatches

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