A finely restored example of this rare firms output.
Leather covered and pinned pair case, the inner silver gilt, hallmarked 1757, casemaker PM (Peter Mournier, one of the finest casemakers of the period). Beautifully finished fullplate fusee movement with square baluster pillars and well pierced and engraved cock and slide plate. Cylinder (deadbeat) escapement, retaining the original Graham-type banking. Steel balance, the spiral balance-spring held with a square pin in the stud. Best quality 'Roman & Arabic' enamel dial, blued-steel beetle & poker hands. 48 mm diameter
Benjamin Gray in partnership with Justin Vulliamy, a very fine watchmaker. His partnership with Vulliamy, who almost certainly came to London to learn cylinder escapement making from Graham, was most successful and launched the Vulliamy firm as 'Watchmakers to the King' for over 100 years.
Watches having gold or silver inners paired with pinned leather outers are well recorded throughout the 18th century. This may be because their first owners wanted a harder wearing outer, although many were no doubt supplied as an alternative outer for 'everyday' wear when also purchasing an outer aimed for 'best' wear only. Plus, with casemakers of skill and ability then readily available, purchasing a new or alternative style of outer is always likely to have been an option.
NB: I have recently had the gilt-metal outer re-covered in black Morocco leather and re-pinned with gold pins (each one individually made and placed into the original case piercing) by the best craftsman presently doing such work. I am pleased to acknowledge the integrity and quality of such fine restoration work.
A lovely watch that shows in its finishing, especially of the steelwork, a maker(s) who was not only skilled but also enjoyed their work. Dial with very faint hair cracks that need an eyeglass to see. Otherwise a fine example of this firm's output: restored, serviced, and guaranteed.
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