Rolex Tudor oyster 34 Prince ref 7944 roulette calendar with Rolex riveted bracelet in original box super rare watch made in 1958
In looks and spirit the Reference 7944 harkens back to the Rolex Oyster Perpetual Date, Rolex’s entry-level date model at the time. The stainless steel case is the same as those used by Rolex, as evinced by the presence of a Rolex crown. Although modest at 34mm, the case is beefy with long lugs, and wears larger than the size would suggest.
But the most beautiful feature of this watch is without question the dial. Textured dials like this one are a holdover from the times when every component of a watch was constructed by hand, or milled on a hand-powered machine. This particular type of textured dial is known as ‘honeycomb’ or ‘waffle’, due to the impression the crosshatch pattern gives.
Difficult to construct, these dials are also difficult—one might even say impossible—to refinish, and are thus highly prized by collectors as a sign of the watch’s authenticity.
Wearing such a watch, and viewing how the light captures the texture of the dial—lightly touched with patina—one realizes that, although it might not bear the signature of a contemporary master, it’s no less a work of art.
Although it started as Rolex’s gateway brand, the quality of Tudor’s products were by no means inferior to Rolex’s. In fact, the use of many of the same parts as Rolex (including dials and the patented Oyster cases) ensured that the consumer was getting Rolex quality at a slightly lower price point.
It’s in vintage Tudor models like the Tudor Prince Oysterdate 34, particularly, that this is most apparent. From its inception, the Tudor Prince has been shrouded in a mantle of sheer uncompromising toughness. Early ad campaigns stressed the watch’s resilience, and its participation in the British North Greenland Expedition brought awareness of the brand to the world.
Stainless Steel case is approximately 34mm (excluding crown). Tudor Reference 7944. Self Winding Tudor Automatic Movement. 1950s.
Overall Condition: The case is in very good condition overall, with light signs of wear consistent with age and use. Black honeycomb dial features gilt printing and is in very good condition overall, showing normal signs of aging and patina. Luminous material has aged evenly. Gold applied dart indices and gold luminous hand show normal aging and patination. Signed crown.