The Royal Jester diamond-set watch by Backes & Strauss lives up to its name. Not only is it regally embellished with the finest diamonds, but its intriguing mechanism is a clever pun, a witty clockwork game designed to make you smile.
Like the court jesters of the medieval era, it is a privileged member of the royal entourage. No less than 202 of Backes & Strauss' diamonds adorn its round white gold case and dial. And should you want to have a different central stone - a blue or pink diamond, say - Backes & Strauss is happy to offer this bespoke option.
The total carat weight of the diamonds adds up to a princely 15.78ct. The central stone, or the 'jester', is just over one carat and is of the top D colour and Internally Flawless, as certified by the Gemmological Institute of America.
Furthermore, it is an Ideal cut, a signature of Backes & Strauss, that, thanks to its perfect symmetry and additional facets, refracts light to create the desired 'Hearts and Arrows' effect. This translates as a brighter, cleaner sparkle that is apt for the star of this magnificent watch. The Ideal cut wastes more of the diamond in return for a more brilliant fire, and even the crown and the buckle are diamond-set, an example of the lengths to which this brand will pursue perfection and luxury.
Behind every joke of the jester was a profound truth, and likewise the mechanics of the timekeeping of this watch are both delightfully enthralling yet technically complex. The diamond-swathed dial dispenses with everyday hands and instead relies on discreet crimson hour and second markers. These red indicators appear to glide mysteriously beneath the concentric baguette diamond-set discs in the tradition of the mystery clocks popular in the first of half of the last century.
At the heart of this whimsical timekeeper is a mechanical movement capable of rotating with precision the sapphire discs that carry the hour and minute markers as well as offering a 36-hour power reserve between windings. As part of The Franck Muller Group, Backes & Strauss counts on the technical prowess of the group as well as its own mastery of diamonds, all with a lightness of touch that belies its mechanical prowess.