Today, to honor the 90th anniversary of the iconic Jaeger-LeCoultre Reverso—an acclaimed and coveted wristwatch—the brand’s CEO, Catherine Rénier, announced the most complicated addition to the collection to date. Known as the Hybris Mechanica Calibre 185 Quadriptyque, debuting at the trade show Watches and Wonders Geneva, this limited edition timepiece features four functional display faces integrated into the iconic rectangular shape.
The name Reverso is a key indicator as to what makes the timepiece unique. Its case contains a module that flips over and reveals a reverse side, and was originally conceived as a way to protect the crystal and face of the watch for polo players, with the reverse side becoming a space for personalization of all kinds. Over the years multiple variations have been created featuring different complications (a word that refers to any feature on a mechanical watch that exists in addition to those that tell time) and decorative applications from simple to ornate. In some instances (like the new Quadriptyque) the Reverso contains a second watch face. The luxury Swiss watchmaker pioneered, perfected and continues to push the limits of this unique watch and the results are stunning.
With the Quadriptyque, there are a staggering 11 complications—the result of six years of development and 12 patents. These include three traditional fine-watchmaking attributes—a tourbillon, perpetual calendar and chiming minute repeater—as well as indicators of synodic, draconic and anomalistic cycles. This lunar combination has never been presented together on a wristwatch—and make it an unmatched astronomical guide.
The double-face design of the 51 by 31 by 15mm white gold wristwatch makes it surprisingly legible. The in-house Calibre 185 manual movement (which powers the watch) is undeniably the most important characteristic, as it aligns every function within, from the timekeeping precision to the melodic, seamless chiming of the crystal gongs and trebuchet hammers of the minute repeater.
The innovations of the Quadriptyque extend from other milestones in the Hybris Mechanica collection, as well as those of the Reverso itself (many of which are chronicled in Assouline’s Reverso book). But the inclusion of the lunar indicators—a nod to the cosmic power of time-telling and its relationship to the sun, stars and planets—imparts new grandeur. From a star-flecked chart to a brilliant blue lacquered Earth, jewelry-like finishing reaffirms the rarified nature of the Quadriptyque.
To learn more about this haute horlogerie masterpiece, which is limited to 10 pieces, watch the new Hybris Mechanica introduction online now.
Images courtesy of Jaeger-LeCoultre