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4.1586 Antique Longines ‘Gothic-Deco’ Wristwatch, Switzerland, 1915

Very early 1915 Gothic style LONGINES watch. Elegant enamel dial with Art Deco style font and Gothic touch. For 1915, this watch is unusually large at 40mm. This watch is a valuable historical timepiece, the movement is clear and precise, and counts down the time with high accuracy. The movement has been serviced and oiled, and the new crown mainspring provides more than 35 hours of running time. Comes with a 12-month guarantee and a 20mm vintage-military style genuine leather strap.

Key Features

A very early model from the world-famous company LONGINES. During the First World War, such watches were used mainly for professional purposes – cavalrymen, drivers, and the military. For wristwatches of the early 20th century, dimensions of about 32-35 mm are typical, but here the largest size is 40 mm, excluding the crown. The serial number is the same on the case and on the movement, and according to the Longines serial number catalogue, corresponds to 1915.

Elegant enamel dial with an interesting Art Deco style font with a Gothic touch. For 1915, this watch does look unusual – a wristwatch instead of the usual pocket watch, an avant-garde interpretation of the Gothic, and an unusually large size.

This watch has both pros and cons. Among the disadvantages, there is a crack on the lid (sealed inside with a sealant, so that it does not affect the work), and there are many cracks and chips on the edges of the enamel (but which are not visible when worn). The undoubted advantages to the watch are its comfortable and moderately large size, an early-type case with branding, and the famous bold Art Deco style.

This watch looks like an exceptional historical artefact, the movement is clear and precise, and counts down the time with high accuracy.

About Longines

The Longines watch company was founded in 1832 by watchmaker Auguste Agassiz, and his two partners,  Henri Raiguel and Florian Morel. Initially, the original name of the company was Raiguel Jeune & Cie. However, by 1846, Raigeul and Morel had retired from the watch industry, leaving Agassiz as the sole head of the company.

The name ‘Longines’ comes from a famous pocket watch model created in 1867 by a later head of the company, Ernest Francillon, who had established a manufactory outside the village of Saint-Imier in the meadows of the district Langgewann (Les Longines). This model became so popular that the company began to experience problems with counterfeiting, and so in 1889 the trademark name of ‘Longines’ was registered, making this company the oldest registered watch manufacturer in the world.

The success of Longines has a long history. They have developed highly regarded reputations in equestrian sports such as horse racing, due to their creation of the 20H ‘mono-pusher’ chronograph 1878, which enabled the creation of precise stopwatches suitable for timing professional events.

In the 1940’s, Longines actively collaborated with both UK and US allies, as well as with the Wehrmacht, supplying watches to all warring parties. Many military style watches from the company can be found. In 1945 Longines brought the first watch with automatic winding to market, and in 1952 they were the official timekeeper of the Olympic Winter Games in Oslo.

Today, Longines continues to thrive just as successfully as ever before, and along with Omega and Tissot, is one of the largest brands inside the Swatch Group.

Servicing and Guarantee

This timepiece has been serviced with full disassembly in our Bristol workshop. There is a 12-month guarantee, subject to the usage and care guidelines. The watch come with a new, military style genuine leather black strap.

Overview

Body: ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️  (7/10 good)

Watch face: ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️  (7/10 good)

Mechanism: ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️  (8/10 near perfect)

Accuracy: ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️  (8/10 near perfect)

Case and Strap

  • Original, early type circular case – still resembles a pocket watch shape.
  • Moveable lugs on olive mounts.
  • Nickel.
  • Antique mineral crystal.
  • Hinged caseback with the “EFCO LONGINES” signature and serial number.
  • Tight-fitting, silver cast crown.
  • Longines brand name stamped on inside case cover.
  • New, high-quality vintage-military style strap with thick, genuine leather.

Dimensions:

  • Width w/o crown 40 mm.
  • Width w/ crown 43.5 mm.
  • Height w/ lugs 45 mm.
  • Strap width 20 mm.

Dial and Hands

  • Original, white enamel dial.
  • Rare, black Arabic numerals in Gothic style font.
  • “Longines” signature in italics.
  • Small seconds subdial.
  • Dark blue ‘spade style hour and minute hands.
  • Dark blue seconds hand with tail.

Movement

  • Swiss-made movement.
  • 26 Longines caliber.
  • 15 ruby jewels.
  • Manual winding.
  • Large, “Longines” signature and serial number on bridge.
  • Power reserve more than 35 hours.
  • Gilt plates and bridges.
  • Precision-ground steel wheels.
  • Polished screws.
  • New balance axis ensures high accuracy.

Testing Results

  • Average timekeeping range: within 30 sec/day.

Servicing and Guarantee

  • Fully serviced with disassembly in our Bristol shop.
  • Mechanics in full working order.
  • Comes with new, military-vintage style genuine leather strap.
  • 12-month guarantee.
  • Guarantee Terms and Conditions. 

Links and Resources:

Longines Serial Number Catalogue. 

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Case material

Nickel

Dial tone

Beige/White/Silver

Origin

Swiss

Size grade

39-41 mm

Year approx

1915