In its current collection, the new Breguet Classique 5177 presents the Breguet blue for the first time in a grand feu enamel. This unique colour affirms the elegant simplicity of the Breguet style in a contemporary register.
In the eighteenth century, an age marked by baroque exuberance, Abraham-Louis Breguet favoured refined aesthetics. This simplicity became par for the course and its style seduced the elite. In 2019, the new Breguet Classique 5177 Grand Feu Blue Enamel is essentially inspired by these neoclassical lines. However, Breguet adds a fresh new touch this time, with the colour of the blued hands being transposed onto the dial; presenting an unprecedented deep blue grand feu enamel.
The Breguet blue
The hue of the dial echoes the colour obtained during the bluing of the Breguet hands. To guarantee this exact nuance throughout the production process, the development of the pigments called for extensive research. The colour needs to remain perfectly stable during firing at over 800 degrees Celsius. This is required to create a grand feu enamel, lending it a unique grain.
To ensure ease of readability, the moon-tipped hands made of rhodium-plated steel stand out against the blue background. In the same quest for readability, the Arabic numerals, stars, diamond shapes and the fleur-de-lis on the chapter ring are silvered and are larger in size. Their relief is born from a very delicate, powdered tracing. The date figures are treated using the same process in order to aid visibility, due to the positioning of the aperture that sits in a darkened lower level window. Finally, Breguet’s secret signature, also in enamel, appears at 6 o’clock. For all of its timepieces with enamel dial, the House of Breguet continues to use the calligraphy once drawn by Abraham-Louis Breguet, as featured, for example, on the self-winding Breguet No. 15 watch launched in 1787.
The perfect marriage of refined aesthetics and high technology
Powered by the self-winding 777Q mechanical calibre, the Classique 5177 Grand Feu Blue Enamel model has simple and useful functions: the central second hand and the date at 3 o’clock. Current technological advances such as the use of silicon for the lever and escape wheel optimize its chronometric reliability. However, certain aesthetic elements of this calibre, in particular, the form of the wheels, are reminiscent of Breguet’s creations from the late eighteenth century.
Characteristic of a self-winding movement, the rotor in engine-turned 18-karat gold appears through the sapphire-crystal caseback. Similarly, each of the components – visible or invisible – is delicately finished by the craftsmen of the Breguet Manufacture with techniques such as chamfering, circular graining, and brushing, or with the côtes de Genève.
The 777Q calibre fits into a slim case in white gold with fluted sides. True to the Breguet style, the lugs are welded and rounded toward the midnight blue alligator leather strap. Finally, an individual number is engraved on the back of each watch, marking it unique to its owner. In turn, the owner can have their name recorded in the Breguet registers that have been kept since 1780 – as a contemporary sign of their taste for timeless elegance.
The Perpétuelle, the watch of kings par excellence
The Perpétuelle is the name used by Abraham-Louis Breguet to describe his self-winding watches. The perfection of this system was the first major success of his career, at a time when several of his contemporaries were engaged in work on the problem without achieving any convincing results. Breguet became the first to discover, through his oscillating platinum weight watch, a formula that would produce a reliable result. His first Perpétuelle was sold to the Duc d’Orléans in 1780, and from this time his self-winding watches were to bring him considerable fame both at the court of Versailles and throughout Europe. Unique in its time, both technically and aesthetically, the Perpétuelle – the watch of kings par excellence – remains today one of the most powerful symbols of the phenomenal creative genius of its inventor. The earliest of Breguet self-winding watches to have survived, the Breguet perpétuelle repeating watch no. 1/8/82, was completed in 1782. The oscillating platinum weight rewinds the watch automatically.
The House of Breguet, founded in 1775, is the epitome of excellence in watchmaking and forms part of the European cultural heritage. Its creations have graced the wrists of some of the greatest figures in history. The famous Breguet archives house the details of every watch sold since the end of the eighteenth century. Today, the artisans at the House of Breguet continue to make unique works of art that bear witness to the brand’s rich history.
Breguet Classique 5177 Specifications
Case round in 18-karat white gold with finely fluted caseband. Sapphire-crystal caseback. Rounded lugs welded to the case, with screw pins securing the strap. 38mm diameter. Water resistant to 3 bar (30 meters)
Dial in « Grand Feu » blue enamel, with Breguet secret signature. Chapter ring with Breguet Roman numerals. Centre seconds and date aperture at 3 o’clock. Open-tipped Breguet hands in rhodium-plated steel.
Movement mechanical self-winding, adorned with “Côtes de Genève”, Cal. 777Q. Numbered and signed Breguet. 55-hour power reserve. 18-carat oscillating weight in 18k gold, hand-engraved on a rose engine. Stop seconds. 12 lignes. 26 jewels. In-line Swiss lever escapement, escape wheel and lever in silicon. Silicon balance-spring. Breguet balance-wheel with 4 regulating screws. 4Hz frequency. Adjusted in 6 positions.
Strap in dark blue alligator leather with a pin buckle in white gold.
For more information, please visit the Breguet Website.