Daniel Roth Perpetual Calendar Moon Phase - Ref. 118.L.40
Despite only launching his namesake brand during the tail end of the 20th century, Daniel Roth's foray into watchmaking began many decades prior. Watchmaking is very much in Roth's DNA, with the craft present throughout his family tree. During the 1970s, Roth took on a tremendous level of responsibility as he was entrusted by the Chaumet brothers to revive their recent acquisition, Breguet. What followed was 12 months of study, research, and practical development, while channeling the spirit of Abraham-Louis Breguet. By fusing Roth's technical ability with his study, Breguet's successful revival at the fingertips of Roth spanned fourteen years thanks to his authentic alignment with the brand's origins. The complication most synonymous with Breguet is the tourbillon, and as such, Roth knew it must play a part in the brand's renaissance. With Roth's dedication to the complication, he quickly became one of the world's leading authorities. Eventually, the opportunity presented itself for Roth to be able to use the expertise he'd honed while restoring Breguet's reputation and direct those efforts into his own brand. In 1988, Daniel Roth, the watch brand was conceived.
Not deterred by the more prominent watch brands that boasted heritage and long-established brand awareness, Daniel Roth began producing distinctive watches that blended creativity and classic design elements. A double-ellipse case (known as the Ellipsocurvex) was universal throughout all of his pieces, as were traditionally executed dials similar to Breguet. There are five coveted complications at the pinnacle of collectable Daniel Roth watches, the Perpetual Calendar, Tourbillon, Rétrograde, Minute Repeater, and the Chronograph. The Perpetual Calendar, unsurprisingly, was quite the upheaval, and expert knowledge was required to realise this complication. As such, Daniel Roth approached his close neighbour and skilled watchmaker Philippe Dufour. A double-digit execution for the day and month and one displaying this information via two sub-dials (also with instantaneous changing at midnight, something the pair couldn’t achieve with the double-digit display) were worked into the Ellipsocurvex case format and debuted during 1993.
After the Daniel Roth name was purchased by Bulgari, where varying degrees of modernisation of the Daniel Roth design language occurred over the following years. This was accelerated from 2011 onwards after Bulgari was incorporated into the LVMH. Despite the man himself leaving the brand after its acquisition, occasional early 21st century models maintain a pronounced amount of early influence and quintessential Breguet derivative design precedent.
Dating from the 2000s, this special piece is not only remarkably complex, technical, and classically styled, it comes from an interesting period for the Daniel Roth brand, post-acquisition, but with an aesthetic slightly before its core DNA was refined in Bulgari’s language. Released during a transitional period, this compact creation is visually coherent with a familiar yet individual style. The hallmark of a Daniel Roth creation is its double ellipse ‘Ellipsocurvex’ case, and here it is realised in 18-carat yellow gold and is distinguished by a stepped bezel, straight, sharp lugs, and its overall tonneau-esque shape. With a high polish finish throughout, the compact, traditional, and tastefully simplistic exterior is poetically contrasted by a finely detailed dial housing complexity and a configuration rich in design-led personality.
The prowess of Daniel Roth is highlighted prominently within the dial aperture of this timepiece, with a further trademark of these pieces being its guilloché dial. Seen here with a vertical ligne guilloché pattern in a muted grey tone, it is a sophisticated and almost contemporary backdrop for this nuance-rich piece. Executed with poise, this perpetual calendar displays the current hours, minutes, day, date, month, leap year indicator, and the addition of the moonphase. Seldom seen with this lunar cycle indicator, this double-digit display piece is an example of this original vision for the Daniel Roth Perpetual Calendar by Roth and Dufour. Delivering a break from the ‘Ellipsocurvex’ angles of the case is the distinguished brushed silver chapter ring, adorned with black Roman numerals, a dotted seconds minute track and neatly nestled at twelve, the simplistic arc brand signature. Heat-blued hands with a bold arrow tip deliver necessary legibility, while the centre of this dial houses the elegant moonphase indicator at twelve and the day and month sitting in their respective apertures on either side of the central hand stack. The elite integration of the complications doesn’t stop there, as the sub-register at six o’clock houses the date complication via another silver chapter ring and pointer hand, with the centre being commanded by the leap year indicator.
A perfectly symmetrical completion, traditional spirit, yet modern execution combined with the rarities of its moonphase and unique time period for the Daniel Roth brand, this 118.L.40 offers the best of both worlds.
Powering this Daniel Roth Perpetual Calendar Moon Phase Ref. 118.L.40 is the calibre DR.114. Fully visible through the sapphire crystal caseback of this piece, this automatic calibre has a power reserve of 45 hours, a monometallic balance adjusted to 5 positions, a beat rate of 21,600 vph, a finely decorated guilloche rotor and 27 jewels. The beautifully finished isn’t solely reserved for the rotor, as the movement carries a rhodium-plated Côtes de Genève decoration for this nickel lever movement.
All of this automatically powered watchmaking while still maintaining a thickness of just under 10mm.
How It Wears
Carrying the compact coherent proportions of a rounded case, matched with the pure elegance of rectangular and oval cases, the ‘Ellipsocurvex’ case from Daniel Roth in this size is a charming wearer on the wrist, suitable for formal and casual cuffs alike. Measuring 38mm in length by 35mm in width, the piece is wonderfully sized for a timepiece carrying this case shape and represents a mid-size. On the wrist, the refinement of its detailing is unmistakable. Be it the guilloché dial, brushed chapter ring, thermally blued hands, or the neatly integrated perpetual calendar complication, this special Daniel Roth makes for a fantastic watch to wear to the office.
This Daniel Roth Perpetual Calendar Moon Phase Ref. 118.L.40 is presented in excellent condition. Included in the sale of this special piece is its original Daniel Roth strap, accompanied by the outer and inner box. The watch is also sold fitted to a Mr Watchley Grained Cinnamon Strap.
If you desire to take a closer look at this precious timepiece, don't hesitate to contact us and make an appointment.
We are based in Ghent, Belgium.
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* Every watch is delivered in a Mr WATCHLEY Membrane Protection Box for a safe transportation in addition to its original set *
|Dial||Muted grey guilloché|
|Size (Case)||38mm x 35mm|
|Material (Case)||Yellow gold|
|Bracelet||Mr Watchley Grained Cinnamon|