Stamp expert & buyer with over 40 years of experience.
Important Terms about Watches
Watches are very common accessories, valued by men and women alike for their aesthetic qualities and for their practical functions. You’re hardly alone if you need to buy or repair one. Below we’ll define different types of watches, as well as some terminology related to them.
Wristwatch – The most common type, they are worn on the wrist with the aid of a band. There are a great variety of wristwatches, often made specifically for men or women. Analog watches have mechanical hands that rotate around a clock face. Digital watches display the time on an electronic face.
Pocket watch – A type meant to be carried in a pocket, it usually comes with a chain made of gold or some other material intended to secure it in place. Though no longer as popular as they were in previous generations, pocket watches are still valued for their aesthetic qualities.
Skeleton watch – A type where the inner machinery is visible.
Stopwatch – A type that can measure the precise amount of time that elapses between the moment it is turned on (by pressing a button) and turned off (by pressing it again). They are often employed in sporting events.
Complicated watch – The term for a type that includes functions in addition to displaying time and date. Each additional function is called a complication. These additional features can include stopwatch capabilities and the ability to track lunar phases. Complicated watches, along with other types that have non-standard designs, are sometimes called unusual watches. Due to their elaborate design, they can be difficult to repair.
Diving watch – A water-resistant type used for Scuba diving or other water sports.
During the 17th century, skilled craftsmen began to adapt spring powered clocks into rudimentary, mechanical watches with working parts.
Not too long afterward, the first pocket watches were created, available in gold and silver. These pocket watches were considered to be a luxury item, and wealthy men wore them often.
Then, in the 1920s, the first wrist watch was designed and marketed for women interested in wearing fashionable timepieces. Attached to a leather band the wrist watches were initially meant to be more of a novelty toy than anything else. But they quickly became incredibly popular, and soon men and women alike were eager to purchase these timepieces.
As watches became more popular, they also became more casual. Watch makers used gold and silver in their pieces less often, and everyone was eventually able to afford to purchase one of these items, either at retail or discount sale. Dealers sold used watches to large segments of the population.
Soon these watches were everywhere, and they were worn by a wide variety of people. Men might choose to wear a sportier version, while women often preferred something that looked like a piece of antique jewelry. Certain brands became more popular than overs, and everyone seemed to prize Swiss made watches most highly. Watch repair became a necessity, and well maintained vintage watches became a valuable commodity.
Today, watches are just as abundant as ever. They come in digital and analog models. Their styling ranges from sporty to classic to feminine, and they are designed to last for years without being brought in for repair. They are truly a fixture of modern culture, and anyone interested in purchasing a quality time piece should visit their local watch dealer today!