Who could possibly have emotional immunity for the clear night skies? Stars hypnotize children and grown-ups equally; when the weather is right and we are well away from the city glow, I have a fair bit of excitement inside that drives me out to start counting and connecting the shining dots.
No wonder that astronomy, the natural science of celestial objects is among the ancient sciences. The observation relating to the connection between celestial phenomena and events in the human world caused the development of astrologic systems in various early cultures. In spite of losing its academic standing, still today there are firm believers of horoscopes, who derive and foretell terrestrial events from celestial observations.
Can you count the number of tower clocks that show the signs of the zodiac? Time and date being in direct connection with zodiacs, medieval clocks in major European squares often included a zodiac calendar complication. Just think of the oldest working astronomical clocks of the world: the Prague Orloj inaugurated in 1410, or the Zytglogge in Bern form 1405, not to mention the St. Mark’s Clock in Renaissance Venice standing proud on Piazza San Marco, or Münster’s astronomical clock in St. Paul’s Cathedral. The row is kind of endless, Valletta, Rostock, Lyon, Versailles, Gdansk or Hampton Court Palace – these clocks have been true landmarks of the cities, travellers conveyed the fame and riches of these dwellings to all corners of the known world.
The magic of 14-15th century astronomical tower clocks inspired De Bethune to create the new Zodiac edition of DB25T. The blued mirror polished titanium sky carries the 12 zodiac signs in gold, engraved by Michèle Rothen. This is not the first time that Ms. Rothen and De Bethune have worked together – she was responsible for the breathtaking engraving on the Ninth Mayan Underworld and the DB25 Imperial Fountain watches too, for which you can enjoy a great werk-film here.
Between each two zodiacs white gold hour index inserts are shining like stars. The decorative effect is further enhanced by the silver-toned hours and minutes rings and the guilloché pattern at the very centre of the timepiece. The watch received the 5Hz high-frequency DB2109 calibre, which possess a 30 seconds very light tourbillon visible only through the back. The 44mm drum-shaped case is made of white gold.
DB28 Maxichrono Titanium
The ability to tell complex things in a simple way is a great virtue. The DB28 Maxichrono being one of the most intuitive chronographs on the market is a classic example. The central hands and the three numbered circles look far from overcrowded thanks to the 3D dial shape as well as the alternately applied silver-toned and blue scales. The dial looks like circle rings in water caused by a raindrop.
The high-frequency (5 Hz) DB2030 calibre is visible through the case back. It has a patented clutch system with three column wheels, which corrects the faults identified in the traditional chronograph systems. It is a long chronograph, able to measure up to 23 hours, 59 minutes and 59.9 seconds elapsed time. All functions are managed by the single pusher at 12 o’clock.
The company just released the grade 5 titanium version, which to me looks even more handsome than the previous pink gold style. The lightness and the floating lugs characteristic of the model make it super-comfortable to wear.
The DB28 is the most diverse collection of the brand. Some of the watches born in this family are smooth and baby-faced, like the Maxichrono, while others such as the DB28 GS are rather scar-faced machos. The bold character however hides the same comfort as described on the Maxichrono: floating lugs that adapt to the shape of the wrist and titanium case topped off with a very soft touch natural microlight motif rubber strap. The microlight motif continues on the bridges and the main plate and is combined with flat polished parts. The blade-like blued minute hand that complements the look has an equally strong property; however all are in perfect balance. The bezel is flat and has 12 rivets which at the same time mark the hours. The calibre is the DB2115 4Hz with a self-regulating twin-barrel that moves it for 6 consecutive days. During heavy duty it is protected by the triple pare-chute shock-absorbing system.
Photo credits: Loupiosity.com.
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