Calendrier Chinois TraditionnelThis watch features:
Polished 18kt rose gold case.
White "grand feu" enamel dial.
Applied polished rose gold stylized Roman Numerals hour markers.
Polished rose gold skeletonized hour & minute hands.
Modern (current) date indicated by the blued steel serpent shaped hand which points to the current date printed on the extreme perimeter of the dial.
Sub-dial located at the 12 o'clock position.
An additional hour hand moving in sync with the main hour hand, but indicates the hour in traditional & modern Chinese methods.
In traditional Chinese culture the day is divided into 12 double-hours (rather than the modern 24 hour system). Each double-hour is represented by the an animal from the same series of animal as the Chinese Zodiac system.
The inner perimeter of the sub-dial is printed with the names of the animals for each double-hour period.
The outer perimeter of the sub-dial is printed with the Chinese numerals of 1 through 24, indicating modern era hours.
Date & Month:
Sub-dial located at the 9 o'clock position.
The outer perimeter of the sub-dial is printed with the Chinese numerals of 1 through 30, indicating the current date.
The inner perimeter of the sub-dial is printed with the Chinese numerals of 1 through 12.
Since Chinese months are based in the Lunar cycle, new months begin every 29 or 30 days, resulting in shorter year of roughly 354 days per year rather than 365 days. In order to correct this imbalance with the seasons, the Chinese Leap year adds a 13th month. A Leap Year with the 13th month happens every 2-3 years.
The Leap Month traditionally is still called the 12th month however it is counted twice. The Leap Year indicator is visible beneath the 12th month position & show red during the leap year.
Moonphase window sub-dial located at the bottom of the dial.
Represented by the Zodiac Animals (Rat, Ox, Tiger, Rabbit, Dragon, Snake, Horse, Goat, Monkey, Rooster, Dog & Pig) displayed through a small window directly beneath the 12 o'clock position.
Elements & Stems:
Sub-dial located at the 3 o'clock position.
In the Chinese tradition the passage of time is measured in a cyclic period of 60 years, rather than the linear continuous year count of western cultures. The cycles are counted in a combination of Stems (10 count) & Branches (12 count) which correspond with the Zodiac signs. The Stems revolve in 10 year cycles, while the Branches revolve in 12 year cycles. So, year 1 would be 1(stem),1(branch), year 2 would be 2,2 & so on, until year 11, which would restart the Stems cycle but continue with the Branches cycle = 1,11, year 12 would be 2,12. The 13th year would see the restart of the Branches count & would show 3,1 & so on... Until the count of 60 the year line up to 10,12, so that on year 61 the entire cycle begins again.
Chinese culture considers this cyclical process in sync with the concept of Yin-Yang - keeping the harmony of natures which works in a cyclic rhythm of birth, growth and decay, in the ceaseless alternating flow of the seasons
This approach of timing, as not merely a set of numbers, but as a result of the interaction between human & the universe, links the Chinese calendar to the concepts of Yin-Yang and to Chinese philosophy. The Chinese Lunar-Solar calendar is in fact a balance of Yin (moon) and Yang (sun). Yin and Yang are not opposing forces, but complementary forces that interact to form a greater whole. Everything has both yin and yang aspects just as light could not be understood if darkness did not exist, and shadow cannot exist without light. The Yin-Yang logo is featured in the center of this sub-dial.
Unlike most full calendar watches which have recessed pushers in the case edge & which require a tool to adjust the calendar features, this watch has the corrector buttons hidden beneath the lugs on the case back of the watch. This allows for a clean/uninterrupted look of the case edge & also the buttons can be activated with ones fingernails.
Blancpain Caliber 3638, beats at 28,800 vph, composed out of 469 parts, contains 36 Jewels & has an impressive 7 day (168 hour) power reserve.