This piece is a stunning and rare find from the late 18th century. The chatelaine consists of a finely pierced waist plaque with central flower theme and a long steel tongue to secure the piece at a waistband or over a belt. There are decorative steel links; the central two being joined together in the manner typical of steel watch chatelaines of the date. Stylized drawings of this period from the amazing Boulton steel catalogues held in the Birmingham Museum show this detail clearly (see image). There are another four shorter and graduated steel chains. Hanging from the watch section is an unbelievably rare pierced outer case for a pair-cased watch. This would have been placed over a slightly smaller 18th century watch with the stem and bow passing through a specific opening at the top of the outer case. As the watch is not present, a replica bow and stem have been created to make this piece able to be hung. On the other four chains are a rare steel crank key, a quality steel seal with carved armorial (which is in typical shape for 18th century seals). One of the other two chains are a steel tape measure (possibly Victorian), a simple steel key and a rotating steel seal with an intaglio profile on one side and on the other side, a dove holding leaves. It is particularly special that the design of the waist plaque and the design of the outer case appear to be matching. The condition overall is very good with some staining of the chatelaine but the outer case is in excellent condition. This example would be a fabulous addition to any collection of steel, early watches and is in reality, a museum piece. Maximum length 7.75 ins (19cm). Weight 96 grams. This item appears in my book, “How the Watch was Worn, A Fashion for 500 Years” on page 32. Air Mail Post with tracking to the USA would be $22.00 USD – with no tracking is cheaper. This item is covered by our own insurance policy. For shipping cost to other countries, please contact us.
Incredible Rare Steel Watch Chatelaine with Appendages, late 18th Century
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