New Tradition Quantième Rétrograde watch from Breguet
The 7597 timepiece delves into the origins of the company. From the shape of the bridges to the pare-chute shock-absorber system, as well as the size of the balance and the wheels, all the components are implicitly inspired by the “souscription” and tact watches created by AbrahamLouis Breguet. The new Quantième Retrograde is therefore a real eye-catcher with its symmetrical calibre architecture.
The gold dial features a hand-guilloché “Clous de Paris” motif, traditional Roman numerals and open-tipped hands. As found on the watches that inspired it, the dial is secured by three screws. The 7597 model also features a retrograde date, a function cherished by the brand whose founder was one of the first watchmakers to develop a timepiece equipped with this complication. To ensure a smooth sweep over the mechanism, the distance between the centre and the date sector required the development of a multi-level blued steel hand. In addition, to improve the legibility of the date indication, its sector spreads out over 180 degrees and is covered with a blue coating echoing the shade of the dial. The numerals alternate between silver-toned powdered transfers and gold cabochons. When setting the date, the wearer simply unscrews the pusher at 10 o’clock and then presses the hand successively until the desired date is reached. Finally, the mainplate and bridges are adorned with an anthracite coating endowing this timepiece with strong visual intensity.
The 40 mm white gold case houses the 505Q self-winding movement. This movement is equipped with an inverted lever escapement and silicon horns. This material is also used to produce the Breguet balance-spring. Its multiple properties include resistance to corrosion and wear, insensitivity to the influence of magnetic fields as well as enhanced timekeeping precision. The balance of the new Tradition Quantième Rétrograde oscillates at a frequency of 3 Hz and has a 50- hour power reserve. The 269-part movement is 8.7 mm thick. While the dial features fascinating architecture, the sapphire caseback reveals the gold oscillating weight, whose shape refers to the one on the perpétuelle watch created by Abraham-Louis Breguet in 1780.
The new Tradition 7597 is available with a midnight blue alligator strap secured by a gold pin buckle.
Featuring aesthetics that combines heritage with modernity, the Tradition collection launched in 2005 is the brand’s first line to present all the movement’s organs on the dial side, thus highlighting its inspiration drawn from souscription and tact watches. Launched in 1797, the souscription watch was equipped with a single hand for reading the hours and minutes. The design of this refined yet minimalist timepiece was avant-garde for its era, as was its concept, since a quarter of the price had to be paid when the order was placed.
The same calibre was used by Abraham-Louis Breguet to design the first tact watches presented a year later at the French Industrial Exhibition. At that time, poor lighting made it difficult to read the time on a dial. It was also not considered very elegant to consult one’s timepiece during social occasions. The founder of the watch manufacturer therefore imagined a model serving to read the time by touch, without removing the watch from the pocket. All the wearer need do was check the time by touching the arrow or hours hand turning on the outside of the case and comparing its position with the raised hour-markers on the caseband.
The current Tradition collection picks up Breguet’s codes in a contrasting and contemporary manner.
The Quantième Rétrograde 7597 model is arrayed in blue and paves the way for a resolutely modern, forward-looking design.