Time Test: French Twist

French Test

Watchmaking has its own mini-language: a set of French terms with specific horological definitions. Match the following words with their meanings. The answers appear at the bottom in the form of 3-C, 5-G, etc. (To find out how to pronounce these words, see Part 2 of our Pronunciation Guide in the WatchTime.com “Reference Center” section.)

1. guilloché
2. rattrapante
3. anglage
4. ébauche
5. sonnerie
6. ligne
7. tourbillon
8. monopoussoir
9. remontoir
10. carré
11. chablon
12. chaton
13. foudroyante
14. perlage
15. reglage

Here are your definitions:

A. Square, used to describe square watch cases

B. A movement blank, i.e., a movement without its balance, escapement or mainspring. Translates literally as “rough draft” or “outline.”

C. Device consisting of an escapement enclosed within a tiny rotating cage. Its purpose is to eliminate timing errors caused by the effects of gravity on a watch’s balance. Translates literally as “whirlwind.”

D. A ring, often made of gold, in which a watch jewel bearing is set. Its literal translation, “kitten,” has no apparent connection to its horological meaning.

E. Winding mechanism

F. Engine-turning, a technique for decorating a metal surface, often a watch dial, using a machine called a “rose engine.”

G. Chronograph operated by a single button rather than the standard two.

H. A split seconds chronograph, i.e., a chronograph with two superimposed chronograph seconds that can be used to time simultaneous or consecutive events. At the end of the first event, the watch-wearer stops one of the seconds hands; the other continues running. After he records the first time, he pushes the chrono button and the stopped hand jumps forward to catch up with the other seconds hand. The word translates literally as “to overtake” or “to recover.”

I. A set of unassembled watch-movement components.

J. A chronograph seconds hand that rotates faster than the standard one rotation per minute. Some such hands are contained in a subdial, and rotate once per second. Others rotate around the main dial once every 10 seconds. Translates literally as “lightning,” as in “lightning quick.”

K. Chiming mechanism that sounds either on demand, when a button or lever is pushed, or automatically at certain intervals of time (such as hourly) or at a preset time

L. Beveling (used on the edges of many plates, bridges and other movement components)

M. A decorative finish consisting of small circles

N. A unit of measurement used to denote watch-movement diameters. It is equal to 2.256 millimeters.

O. A watch-manufacturing operation in which the movement’s rate is corrected to obtain acceptable precision





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