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Rarely, do we see watches that have such a great historical value as military-issued watches.The Eterna Majetek is less known and popular than, for example, the iconic MilSub. However, this watch surely has equal historical value. During the 1930’s and 1940’s Eterna delivered this pilot’s watch to the Czech Air Force. The brand produced it together with Longines and Lemania and it came in two dial variations: the early ones had a running second hand at the 6-hour position and a crest engraving on one of the lugs, while later ones came with a central second hand and no crest engraving. At Amsterdam Vintage Watches we have the latter, dating back to circa 1940.The Eterna Majetek was and still is a unique watch with a no-nonsense design. Just have a look at the case (unpolished, by the way): it has this odd but beautiful cushion shape. As far as we know, this is the only military watch with such a case design. Like any military watch the issue number is engraved on the caseback, which is for this watch 3357422. The glossy, gilt dial has a pure, minimalistic design with a closed minutetrack, full Arabic index and matching cathedral hands. The luminous material, which is radium, is still completely intact. A lovely detail are the straight lugs that nicely slope downwards. The case, that houses the manual wind movement calibre 852S, measures 40mm in diameter which was very large for that time but of importance as the dial had to be red easily.Just imagine that these watches were not just time keepers but true companions during battle.
EternaDr. Girard & Schild, the organization that later would become Eterna, was established in 1856 in Grenchen, Switzerland. The factory was specialised in watch movements. However, in 1876, when the company experienced some internal changes and the name was changed to Schild Fréres & Co., they introduced their first fully assembled watch. In 1906, after a new name and logo had appeared on several dials, the name was finally changed to Eterna. The brand stood for transformation and patented several innovations and achievements, such as the first series-production wrist watch with alarm, the smallest production wristwatch and the Eterna-matic movement (the ball-bearing mounted rotor, which Eterna derived its logo from). In 1932, the organization separated into ETA SA (movements) and Eterna (watches). Nowadays, Eterna contributes to the watch industry by always delivering high-quality, advanced and reliable mechanical movements.