Accent in GENEVE

Hello Everyone

I was wondering if some vintage dials did not have the accent in the word GENEVE. Was this more common during a specific time period or was it just a random thing? Was it more common on specific dials? Your help is much appreciated!

Re: Accent in GENEVE
12/20/2009 - 19:37
I am sure othe responders are more authoritative than I am on the point, but my understanding is that in French it is normal to omit accent marks over capital letters.
Re: Accent in GENEVE
12/21/2009 - 02:01
To the best of my knowledge, 'Vacheron & Constantin' marked dials at least since 1900 left the factory with the French spelling of Genève in the lower case.  This little accent seems to be easily lost when the dial is restored, cleaned or reprinted and often absconds along with the 'Swiss' (less frequently 'Swiss Made') that is expected at 6 o'clock (unless the dial is of the period when they were marked 'Genève - Suisse' under 'Vacheron & Constantin'). The issue becomes murky when certain auction sites list as original those dials that are obviously missing the accent in Genève, however, I have enquired when interested in the item and learned that an original dial that was reprinted or restored was still described as 'original'.  Some may indicate a reprint but few will disclose minor restorations or cleaning that may have obliterated our fragile little accent.   Also it has also been said that enameled dials with raised lettering on some 1950's and 60's wristwatches were made without the accent but again, I've seen several enameled dials with this accent so I believe its a myth.   I'm looking forward to seeing pictures of any contradictions so please don't hold back . In short, as a rule of thumb I will consider a dial with the missing è as restored and look for confirmation if the SWISS is also gone.  And to be fair, sometimes a well-restored dial is better than a damaged one...its all in the eye of the beholder!
12/21/2009 - 03:11
I should have said that typically the spelling was the upper-case GENÈVE to compliment 'VACHERON & CONSTANTIN' .
Re: Correction
12/21/2009 - 04:23
I just submitted a picture of my VC watch. The dial appears original but I'm not an expert. Is this dial a refinished dial or has the accent in GENEVA been removed by cleaning of the dial over time? Also, what do you think of the silver minute markers...look authentic to you? I bought this from a watch store with great credentials. I appreciate your input on this watch!
Here is the dial in question. Thanks for all your help in this matter.
12/21/2009 - 04:17
Nice Watch!
12/21/2009 - 19:30
I would assume a screwback case with caliber 1019 movement?  Please share any pictures of the inner workings . Your silver minute marks are a first for me...I would have expected gold colored dots.  While V&C has a history of producing exceptions to every rule, they always have superb aesthetics.  In this case the silver dots is IMHO very out of character with the design and doesn't belong!  Where I have seen such a combination was with mixed-metal cases of steel and gold. On the plus side, the fonts all appear correct, except for the missing accent, and I see no evidence of the indexes having been removed and re-glued.  Are there minor nicks and scratches from previous service when the hands were removed?  I would expect that on an unrestored dial but not with a refinished one.  As you can see there are many many indicators...
Re: Nice Watch!
12/21/2009 - 20:57

Thanks for getting back to me. The silver dots look better in person than in the picture. I have seen 2 other vintage examples where the case was 18K with gold markers but silver minute dots. Perhaps other loungers could comment if they have seen this on dials. The movement is the caliber 1019/1. I'll post a picture of the movement soon. As mentioned before, I bought this from a watch dealer/store via EBAY. I got a great deal on the watch only because the rotor was not attached to the movement...the watchmaker could not find VC parts to attach the rotor. The watch came with the unattached rotor. I contacted VC and they told me it could cost up to $2000 for a full overhaul, polish and attaching the rotor with the correct parts. I'm not complaining because I got a good deal. Right now the watch works as a manuel wind watch. I'm happy.  I'm interested to find out how rare my silver dot minute markers are with gold markers...any information is much appreciated!

Re: Re: Nice Watch!
12/21/2009 - 23:10

Forgot to add that the gold markers do have small scratches on them and that the dial does have a superficial scratch on it.

I have never seen silver markers with a gold case but that
12/22/2009 - 00:47
doesn't mean it never existed. There were so many variations at the time.