The First Chronograph - Louis Moinet

Updated: Feb 12

Louis Moinet - First Chronograph Ever


We invented the idea of time and then way to section pieces of eternity - The Chronograph. A chronograph is simply the sum of this two propositions a stopwatch plus a display watch, measuring time (χρόνος - khrónos) and writing time (γράφω (gráphō 'to write') results in χρονογράφος (khronográphos 'time recording').

The first chronograph did literally this - marking the dial with a small pen attached to the index so that the length of the pen mark would indicate how much time had elapsed. The invention of the Amazing Machine that writes time, the first chronograph it’s attributed to the French Louis Moinet.


Born - 1768

Bourges, France

Died - 1853

Residence - Paris, France

Nationality - French

Occupation - Horologist, Sculptor, Painter

Louis Moinet was a genius that loved Italy, sow at the age of 20 he went to Rome, then to the beautiful Florence and study architecture sculpture. Years later back to Paris, he become a professor of fine arts, and close friend to Lalande an astronomus, Thomire a French sculptor, the most prominent Bronzier, and to Jean Eugène Robert-Houdin - the famous magician!

Years later he sterts stuying horology, start spending long periods of time in Sitzerand, and became friends wih Jacques-Frédéric Houriet, amoung other watchmakers, among them the great Abraham-Louis Breguet. Louis Moinet made watches to Napoleão Bonaparte; President Thomas Jefferson; President James Monroe; King George IV.


He also produced watches for the navy, astronomy, he become the author of several improvements, but mainly the first ever chronograph, although he called it a “compteur de tierces.” According to hallmarks on the dust cover, the chronograph was started in 1815 and completed the following year.


Years later, in 1969, Zenith, the Heuer/Breitling/Hamilton-Buren/Dubois-Depraz Group and Seiko engage on a race engage on a race for the first automatic Chronograph, Zenith even call his on “El Primero” (the first in Esperanto).



©2019 by Amazing Time Machines.