Priceless piece of historical past: Last Emperor of China’s watch fetches record-breaking US$5.1 million at Hong Kong public sale

A uncommon Patek Philippe watch as soon as owned by Aisin-Gioro Puyi, the final emperor of China‘s Qing Dynasty, has been bought at public sale in Hong Kong for a record-breaking HK$40 million (US$5.1 million). An nameless buyer purchased the timepiece, which had been gifted by Puyi to his Russian interpreter throughout his imprisonment by the Soviet Union. The sale value, which didn’t embody the public sale house payment, exceeded the pre-sale estimate of US$3 million and set a new document for a wristwatch that when belonged to an emperor.
Thomas Perazzi, head of watches at public sale home Phillips Asia, stated it was “the highest result” for any wristwatch with such a prestigious past possession. The watch is one of solely eight identified Patek Philippe Reference 96 Quantieme Lune timepieces in existence. Other notable watches owned by emperors which have been offered at public sale embrace a Patek Philippe timepiece belonging to the last Ethiopian Emperor Haile Selassie, which fetched US$2.9 million in 2017, and a Rolex watch that belonged to the last Emperor of Vietnam, Bao Dai, which offered for US$5 million in the same 12 months.
Puyi, born in 1906, started his reign because the last Emperor of China’s Qing dynasty at just two years previous. Following Japan’s defeat in World War II in 1945, Puyi was captured at China’s Shenyang Airport by the Soviet Red Army and detained as a war prisoner in a detention camp in Khabarovsk, Russia, for five years.
The auction house spent three years working with watch specialists, historians, journalists, and scientists to analysis the watch’s historical past and verify its provenance. According to Perazzi, the timepiece was the finest that Patek made at the moment.
List Working, who interviewed Puyi’s interpreter Georgy Permyakov in 2001, recalled how the emperor gave the watch to Permyakov on his last day in the Soviet Union, shortly earlier than being extradited to China. Working said…

Leave a Comment