Guardians of Time
Roger Dubuis honours the courage and chivalry of the Knights of the Round Table in a second edition of its Arthurian masterpiece, writes Lily Ong
The captivating legend of King Arthur and the Knights of the Round Table, with its timeless qualities of loyalty, chivalry and bravery, has long provided rich inspiration for print and screen. So it’s no surprise that Roger Dubuis, in its quest for its own Holy Grail—excellence worthy of 100 per cent Geneva Seal certification—drew on the legend for its Excalibur Knights of the Round Table timepiece, introduced in 2013.
The designers at the Geneva-based manufacture created a 28-piece limited edition distinguished by its bold look and which maintained the brand’s 100 per cent certification. The noble knights sit around an enamel and decal reproduction of the English oak Round Table that hangs in the Great Hall of Winchester Castle, which legend records as the table of King Arthur and his knights. The watch generated rave reviews and admiration, with collectors around the world clamouring to own one.
Roger Dubuis revisits the Arthurian legend this year with a new 28-piece iteration. As in the inaugural design, Excalibur Knights of the Round Table II features 12 meticulously sculpted knights whose swords form a perfect circle in place of traditional hour markers. Skilled artisans have given each of the 6.5mm knights his own unique look. The figures are cast in bronze from finely sculpted molds, whereas gold was used for the 2013 edition, and the details are hand-finished, with each knight taking a day’s work and involving micro-engraving. The slight patina of the bronze accentuates the contrasts of the design.
The dial is made from precious jade, which was chosen because it is seen as a stone of protection in some cultures. Black jade also represents power, wisdom and self-control— qualities that define the Knights of the Round Table. A circular flange of satin white gold, carefully engraved and patinated to create a cobblestone paving effect, frames the dial.
Inside the 45mm white gold case beats the mechanical self-winding calibre RD821, which has a 48-hour power reserve. As with all Roger Dubuis timepieces, the 172 components of the calibre are hand-finished and stamped with the prestigious Geneva Seal, a guarantee of exclusivity, origin, expertise, performance and durability—entirely worthy of the brave knights of old.
“In this standout model, the motto of the mythical knights, ‘Courage and Generosity,’ reflects the Roger Dubuis approach to its craft,” says the brand’s product design director, Lionel Favre. “It is nobly represented by the artists and watchmakers working in close collaboration to create an alliance of both traditions.”
“THE MOTTO OF THE MYTHICAL KNIGHTS, ‘COURAGE AND GENEROSITY,’ REFLECTS THE ROGER DUBUIS APPROACH TO ITS CRAFT”
Assembling the Roger Dubuis Excalibur Knights of the Round Table II requires absolute concentration and attention to detail