The Tatler Watch Glossary: C To M

Watches & Jewellery

June 28, 2018 | BY Christian Barker

The world of watches can be confusingly complicated—in more ways than one. We break down some of the key terms the budding horology enthusiast needs to comprehend

Crown

The rotating knob(s) on the periphery of the case, used to set the time and other read-outs. In non-automatic mechanical watches, it’s also used to wind the movement. A highly useful knob, like your lawyer.

Crystal

The see-through cover, generally made of synthetic sapphire or plastic, through which a watch dial is viewed. Also: A name favoured by exotic dancers.

Dial

The watch face. As is the case with the human visage, the most beautiful are commonly the cleanest and least adorned—a simple, elegant white enamel dial is the lipstick, foundation and eyeliner of the horological world.

Day/Date

A watch displaying the day of the week and date (but not the month). A day-date, meanwhile, is what you might arrange with an iffy Tinder match.

Dual Time

A watch that simultaneously tells time in two locations. Handy for frequent travellers, international businessmen and two-timing philanderers (often one and the same).

See more: The Tattooist's Time: Hublot Gets Inked With Maxime Büchi

Guilloche

An intricate patterned engraving, usually found decorating the dial. Pronounced like the name of a French/Irishman: Guy (‘ghee’) O’Shea.

Horology

Catch-all term for the watchmaking arts. Don’t be concerned if a man tells you he’s a horology enthusiast, this has nothing to do with studying ladies of the night.

Lugs

Perhaps named after the big lugs who provide security to VIPs, these protrusions protect the case and provide a means of attaching the watch band or bracelet.

Main Plate

At a society ball, this term normally refers to a dry and lifeless chicken breast. In watchmaking, however, Main Plate refers to the base onto which the parts of a watch movement are mounted.

See more editions of the Tatler Watch Glossary.

Illustration: Emma Hope Reed

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