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Up for grabs is a stunning and very rare Longines chronograph, circa 1948, housed in an extremely uncommon 38mm steel case and powered by the famous 13ZN movement. This watch comes to us directly from the grandson of the original owner, a man of Austrian descent based in the United States. According to him, this watch was a family heirloom, as his grandfather purchased it in Europe after serving in World War II. According to Longines, it was given the reference number of 5041 and was invoiced on July 14, 1948 at the Bessire house, then [our] agent for Belgium. Further, the watch has been confirmed as being born with a “white [dial], with tachymeter and telemeter scales and radium.” With the help of an astute collector, and confirmed amongst Longines experts and collectors, this watch is likely the only known and confirmed luminous example of this reference.
The condition of this Longines chronograph is excellent. The fixed-bars case is razor sharp and unpolished, with original beveled edges. The dial is similarly well-preserved (compared to other 13ZNs; most did not hold up well over time), with no major damage and a normal light aging/patina throughout. Finally, the original radium lume remains on both dial and hands, aged to a lovely golden yellow.