When did the wrist­watch be­come pop­u­lar?

History Revealed - - Q&A -

Bracelets and pen­dants con­tain­ing me­chan­i­cal clocks were worn as jew­ellery by the wealthy as early as the 16th cen­tury - Eliz­a­beth I re­port­edly re­ceived one as a gift from Robert Dud­ley. As late as 1916, how­ever, the ‘bracelet watch’ was thought not only a fem­i­nine trin­ket but a “silly-ass fad” by the New York

Times. How­ever, by the 1880s, the Bri­tish mil­i­tary had recog­nised its prac­ti­cal uses in favour of the un­wieldy pocket watch and it be­came an es­sen­tial strate­gic tool dur­ing World War I. By peace­time, the ‘wrist­let watch’ was a com­mon com­po­nent of male at­tire. EB

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