A magnificent gold enamel "à toc et à tact" quarter repeating verge pocket watch “Three Colour Gold" studded with precious rose-cut diamonds by Dufalga Geneve.
Case: 20k gold, translucent enamel, diamonds, rear bell. Dial: white enamel with Roman numerals. Movement.: full plate movement, chain fusee, three-arm steel balance signed Dufalga Geneve. Pocket watch case measures 45mm across. The chatelaine measures 125mm long, total weight of both 152 grams.
The back of the exquisitely executed three-colour gold case is decorated with a wonderful design. In the centre sits an applied enamel scene. The edge of the case has circular discs and chased two-colour gold foliage. The front with its diamond-studded bezel is similarly ornamented and has a large rose cut diamond pusher for opening the case.
Just serviced and working well, repeater working well when plunger pushed at top.
Provenance: Christies London 2001
Similar pieces by Dufalga:
- A magnificent gold enamel chatelaine, signed Dufalga à Paris, with case maker's punch mark HF. Musée International D'Horlogerie, La Chaux-de-Fonds, Switzerland, circa 1780 (Catalogue d'oevre choisies, Catherine Cardinal and Jean-Michel Piguet, lot 179, p. 170-171).
- An exquisite gold and translucent red enamel watch with floral diamond ornamentation, signed Dufalga Genève, circa 1775. Its dial and movement are almost identical to our Dufalga à Paris. The style of the case decoration is the same, although executed in a less lavish way. In "The Camerer Cuss book of antique watches", 1976, colour plate 3, p. 100-101 and plate 69, p. 131, Terence Camerer Cuss even writes "Note the similarity to contemporary Parisian works".
- A beautiful three-colour gold and diamond-set chatelaine, signed Dufalga à Paris, with case maker's punch mark HF. Again, the same work as with the watch signed Dufalga Genève. Dr. Peter Friess, Director and Curator of the Patek Philippe Museum in Geneva describes the watch as Geneva 1775, and refers in the index to Philippe Caffarello Dufalga (1711-1794), "known primarily for luxury watches" (Patek Philippe Museum, Vol. III, p. 337, inventory S-181).
- The Louvre in Paris has a three-colour gold watch, signed Dufalga Genève, with case maker's punch mark HF, circa 1765 (Les montres et horloges de table du musée du Louvre, Tome I, La collection Olivier, no. 270, p. 202).
- The collection of Edouard Gélis at the Paul-Dupuy Museum in Toulouse, France holds two watches signed Dufalga à Genève, with case punch marks HF, circa 1765 (Michel Hayard, Chefs-d'oeuvre de l'horlogerie ancienne, Collection du musée Paul-Dupuy de Toulouse, p. 232-233, inv. 18245 and 18259.
There is some confusion about the name Dufalga in the dictionaries of watchmakers. It is most likely that we are talking about Philippe Cafarello Dufalga (1712 France - 1794 Geneva), the son of Francois Dufalga from Revel, Haut-Languedoc, France. He moved to Geneva with his father and became a citizen of Geneva in 1745. He was well known for luxury watches and probably worked in Geneva and Paris with the same (probably Swiss) casemaker HF - hence the signatures Dufalga à Paris and Dufalga à Genève.
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