In August 2011, German watchmaker Kronsegler secured the cooperation of the Vatican Observatory, an astronomical research institution supported by the Holy See, in the production of its unique and elegant “Sacristan” watches.
These are the world’s only watches that have been officially developed with the Vatican within the past 400 years. Previously sold very successfully in Europe, these watches have just recently been approved for sale in the United States. The distinguishing feature of Kronsegler’s one-of-a-kind “Sacristan” watches is their indication of the appropriate time of day for the seven prayers prescribed by the Catholic Church.
The St. Benedict’s Charter, with its requirement of seven distinct prayers throughout the day (the liturgy), necessitated the introduction of more deliberate and sophisticated timekeeping practices. Beginning around the 11th century, the “Sacristan” was established as the monk in charge of keeping time and organizing the day’s schedule. In homage to this storied past, the “Sacristan” watch line is dedicated to the pope.
The seven prayers, in order from dawn to midnight, are: Laudes, Terz, Sext, None, Vespers, Komplet and Matutin. In Western society, lifestyle changes have made complete adherence to the liturgy impractical, but most contemporary Catholics do observe some routine in regards to prayer. The “Sacristan” watch serves as a simple and beautiful reminder of this rich tradition.
In respect of the Vatican’s cooperation with the watchmaker, Kronsegler’s is contributing a significant portion of its revenue from “Sacristan” watch sales to the Vatican Observatory Foundation, which spearheads the research and education efforts of the Vatican.
“Sacristan” watches are available in three mechanical and quartz models for men and women, with each style sharing the same impeccable craftsmanship, both in the mechanics of the piece and the understated luxury of the design. Each watch comes in a simple blue box with the official seal of the Vatican Observatory Foundation printed on the interior of the box.
Buyers of a “Sacristan” watch receive certificates of provenance and authenticity, including a personal sequence number and embossed seal. Perhaps most fascinating is the inclusion of a booklet with the story behind these watches. Indeed, the “Sacristan” watch references a historical tradition dating back nearly 10 centuries.
Whether as a gift for oneself or a loved one, the Vatican Observatory “Sacristan” watch is a timepiece without peer. Amazon.com is the official retailer for Kronsegler’s remarkable creation: http://www.amazon.com/s/ref=nb_sb_noss_1?url=search-alias%3Dwatches&field-keywords=Sacristan
Kronsegler GmbH – an owner-managed Saxon enterprise – has been developing and making watches under its own Kronsegler brand-name as well as under other brand-names on commission in Glashuette. The company has created more than 35 lines of its own watches with around 200 models. Each year 5 – 7 new watch lines are presented, each being protected by industrial design patents for Kronsegler GmbH in Glashuette.
Primarily historical, astronomical-mathematical and philosophical themes are transposed into the designs and functional innovations. Kronsegler also produce watches for licence of other well-known brands; Dr.House / House M.D. and the Vatican Observatory for instance.
The Kronsegler brand name is focused on innovative, affordable watches at prices ranging from $200 to $400, or top-segment mechanical watches for just under $1,300. The company uses exclusively Japanese and Swiss movements, development by the company of its own movement based on Swiss components having been terminated in 2009.