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Posted: Saturday, September 9, 2017 3:15 PM


Both rare and magnificent antique Swiss made wind up pocket watch in double hunter case still works! The Niello case is a fabulous tri-color work of 9k gold, sterling silver and black enamel. Hand engraved and dedicated to The Patron Saint of Hunters. Depicts Hubertus' holy vision of a stag with an illuminated crucifix between it's horns.

Front Cover: says "ST HUBERTUS". Hubertus, one dog by his side, and the cross over the stag's head are all in gold in-lay. The other two dogs, the stag and the remainder of the scene are silver. There is a tiny chip in the gun metal black enamel on upper right edge near the stag.

Back Cover: In foreground, three dogs guarding over a dead fox, with two horse mounted hunters in the background. There is no gold inlay in this scene. It is all silver on gun metal black.

Watch Dial Face: Thomas Russell & Son, Tempus Fugit, the winged wheel, and Liverpool, Swiss Made. 15 Rubis. Roman numerals with second counter.

About Niello: The niello watch case became a canvas for outstanding art works that will likely never be duplicated. The term niello comes from the Latin word nigellum that is the diminutive of niger (black.) It was a technique used by the ancient Greeks, Romans, Egyptians and Persians. Niello is a black or blackish-blue composition of lead, silver, copper, sulfur and ammonium chloride. The mixture is fused onto an engraved or cut-out metal base by firing the mix in a process similar to champleve' enameling. Silver was the most often used metal for niello objects since the soft white silver color contrasted beautifully with the darker niello. Rose-gold inlay work was also seen in combination with niello and tri-color effects were achieved by the use of rose-gold, niello and silver. When the niello was heated and fired onto a silver watch case, it actually fused with the silver very strongly, almost as if it were soldered in place. The niello would be filled, finished and polished, leaving the surface of the watch case smooth and flat. One can readily assume that the process of engraving the areas which were to be filled with niello, the firing stages, and the finishing stages were very time consuming and therefore costly. Aside from the production end, the niello cases also had to be designed by artists who would pre-determine the subject matter and then the cases were finished by engravers who produced the fine details.

Antique St. Hubertus Russell & Son Pocket Watch in Nielo Case. - $700

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• Location: District Of Columbia, Silver Spring, Md.

• Post ID: 26860549 washingtondc

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