MADE CIRCA: 1880
MATERIAL: 18ct Yellow Gold
MOVEMENT: Manual Mechanical
CASE DIAMETER: 55mm
Considered the undisputed king and godfather of watchmaking in Denmark, Jules Jürgensen was a watchmaking company based in Denmark founded by the talented Jürgen Jürgensen in 1740.
Jürgen Jürgensen was a humble farm boy who ran away from home at the age of 14. He went on the gain an apprenticeship with Johan Jacob Lincke, a clock maker in Copenhagen, where he demonstrated natural ability with clocks and watches and, went on to further his training in Locle, Switzerland with the celebrated horologist and chronometer maker, J. F. Houriet.
Upon returning home to Copenhagen in 1773, Jürgensen became Houriet's agent for Scandinavia before going into business with watch and clock maker, Isaac Larpent. Twelve years later, Jürgensen was appointed watchmaker to the Danish court.
The business flourished and was subsequently handed down to the next generation of Jürgensen, these being Jules's son Urban Jürgensen who at the age of 21 in 1797, was sent abroad to work with such eminent figures in horology as Abraham-Louis Breguet, Ferdinand Berthoud and British chronometer maker John Arnold. Like his father, Urban became a supplier of chronometers to the Danish court and the admiralty during this time.
Urban subsequently went on to train his youngest brother, Frederick who made a name for himself as a maker of precision instruments including chronometers, regulators and thermometers. Frederick Jürgensen won several prizes for inventions during this time and penned a work on horology, 'Principes Généraux de l'Exacte Mesure du temps par les Horloges'. The book was subsequently translated into several languages and remains to this day a standard reference work.
The company founder, Jürgen Jürgensen, died in 1811 however, the company would be in safe hands. Young Frederick Jürgensen continued to run the family business while his elder brother Urban Jürgensen focused on creating marine and astronomical timepieces.
In time, Urban passed on his watchmaking skills to his sons Jules Frederik and Louis Urban, and, upon their father's death in 1830, the two brothers took over the company that became known as 'Urban Jürgensen & Sønner'.
While Louis Urban managed the company in Copenhagen, Jules Frederik moved to Switzerland and opened a factory in Le Locle in 1835, focusing on high-end watches. The factory also supplied the family business, Jules Jürgensen, with movements and watches. The following year, Jules Frederik married Anastasia Lavalette, daughter of Georges Antoine Lavalette, a member of a Geneva clockmaking family, thereby cementing the Danish watch company's ties with Switzerland.
During the 1860s and 1870s, Jules Frederik won several Gold Medals for his timepieces and, like his father and grandfather, became known for the beauty and precision of his marine chronometers, chronometers and astronomical pendulum clocks. His work as a horologist also earned him the honorary titles of Knight of the Legion d'Honneur and, in his native Denmark, Knight of the Order of Danebrog.
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