Roger’s final collaboration with George Daniels achieves an unprecedented £351,000 hammer price.17 May, 2019
The Phillips curated Geneva watch auction NINE attended by Roger, who also exhibited, achieved exceptional interest and appropriately spectacular hammer prices. Whenever a watch by Roger’s mentor, Dr George Daniels comes available for sale, there is always a ‘buzz’ but, with two pieces of historic rarity coming up for auction, the anticipation was simply electric in Geneva.
Lot 32, was the Daniels Anniversary Watch, the celebration of the 35th anniversary of the invention of Daniels’ co-axial escapement. This was Roger’s final, and perhaps most poignant, collaboration with George. Only 35 of these wristwatches exist and you can read more about the Daniels Anniversary here.
The hammer went down at an astounding 456,250 Swiss francs (£351,000), including buyer’s premium which was almost double the hammer price of the example offered by Bonhams as recently as 2016.
Lot 34, the George Daniels Grand Complication, hammered for 2,420,000 Swiss francs (£1,861,802) including buyer’s premium.
This watch stands apart among George Daniels’ canon. His penultimate watch, made completely by hand, it is the only Daniels timepiece to feature an instantaneous perpetual calendar with retrograde date and minute repeater. Both mechanisms were of George’s own design and the Grand Complication also features his last word in escapement design fitted as it is with his Co-axial.
The Grand Complication was retained by George for his personal use and was never sold during his lifetime, which further underscored its unique significance.