Movement by Barraud with cylinder escapement

Movement by Barraud with cylinder escapement (usually associated with 19th century Swiss watches, though invented by George Graham of London); originally in 18th ct gold case; London, England, 1815; dia. 1” (4.13 cm.).

The layout is similar to the usual verge watch, with the scapewheel parallel instead of at right angles to the plates, so that the cylinder escapement was sometimes called ‘horizontal’. It was not widely used until the 19th century, allowing watches to be made thinner. Earlier English watches retained the fusee and the chain abandoned by 19th century Swiss makers in favour of the barrel with toothed periphery (‘going barrel’), which made the movement smaller.

The encased cylinder is of sapphire to resist wear. The plainness of the movement is remarkable as watches of this period usually had some – if little – decoration.

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