The Breguet Classique Tourbillon Extra-Plat Anniversaire 5365 commemorates Abraham-Louis Breguet’s invention of the tourbillon, which took place 220 years ago. This watch was created to commemorate that occasion, yet it will still remind you of reference 5367. The current Breguet corporation is honoring 2021 with a celebration of its founder’s most famous creation, as it did earlier this year. Although the tourbillon is not his most well-known or significant contribution to the pursuit of chronometric excellence, it has become a symbol for Abraham-Louis’ quest for the perfect timekeeper.
In a nutshell, this is a time-only watch with seconds indicated by the cage of the 60-second tourbillon, which is located between 4 and 6 o’clock. Breguet has chosen this simple execution for a few of particular accents shown in reference 5365, which reflects an important section within the brand’s current range. The goal is to give the tourbillon, which already has a prominent role here, a feeling of occasion, making this limited edition of 35 rose gold pieces all the more intriguing.
First, look for the distinctive etching at the axis of the hour and minute hands above the tourbillon aperture. This is the tourbillon’s patent number, which was granted to Abraham-Louis in 1801. Second, examine the tourbillon bridge more closely. You’d be correct if you assumed this was blued steel; the bridge is straight-grained and bevelled before being treated to a heat treatment that colors it blue. This is the first time Breguet has employed such a bridge, making the reference 5365’s 35 parts extremely unique. Only that number of tourbillon watches were created during Abraham-Louis’ time, according to Breguet, from his own factories in Paris.
Those who are familiar with reference 5367, including how it wears, will recognize reference 5365. However, this is not a watch for the hurried, but we digress. The watch is fairly thin at 7.08mm, but it stands out due to its 41mm diameter, which is accentuated by a narrow bezel. The central Clous de Paris embellishment differentiates the timepiece and provides the aesthetics a particular volume. The artwork is done entirely by hand, with a diamond chisel cutting out a pattern of interlacing crossing lines with a 0.25mm pitch.
If you’re lucky enough to be staring at the time on this watch when it’s on your wrist, the Clous de Paris creates the “illusion of a matte surface,” according to the manufacturer. This type of guillochage, like the Breguet hands and the slightly off-kilter display of time, is another Abraham-Louis hallmark.