Quetzalcoatl is a composite name in the Nahuatl* language derived from quetzalli and used to describe the large, precious green feathers of the sacred quetzal bird; and coatl, meaning snake. It is one of the main divinities of the Mesoamerican civilisations and the feathered serpent, its most iconic incarnation, reigned for many long centuries over pre-Columbian America.
This powerful symbol of Mesoamerican culture was the core of worship and sacred rituals. The related myths and legends appear in the writings of the colonial period. In conjunction with the evening star, it was considered to govern the cycle of time from dawn to dusk. This deity of the summer winds was naturally closely associated with agriculture and in particular with corn farming, as well as being the sovereign protector of goldsmiths and artisans, and the inventor of the calendar.

Stemming from an age-old tradition of artistic crafts and engraving, the solid gold dial of the DB25 Quetzalcoatl, exquisitely fashioned by the gifted engraver Michelle Rothen – based on drawings by David Zanetta – is a natural continuation of the brand founders’ research and exploration. Above and beyond fine craftsmanship and the exercise in style, the ultimate aim is to enable owners to wear on their wrist a portion of the history of humankind, steeped in legends, emotions and universal culture.

The symbolic unity around Quetzalcoatl, formed by the sculpted solid gold hands, takes on an almost mystical aura and enlivens the heart of the dial that constantly evolves in tune with the passing of time. The latter is read off by the tip of the serpent’s head, while its tail indicates the minutes.

De Bethune - DB25 Quetzalcoatl

Close-up on the dial. © De Bethune

The aesthetic construction gives pride of place to an element that is steadily becoming the unmistakable hallmark of the mainanufacture: research on materials and the way light reflects off their finishes – at time radiantly glowing like the circular guilloché motif on the central part; and at others matt, such as the soft patina on the hour indicators formed by a series of temples viewed from the sky. This historical dimension is clearly perceptible thanks to an unusual perspective that provides an aerial view of the ruins of the Aztec temples from the city of Tenochtitlan. This highly personal vision of the archaeological site naturally leads one to step back and adopt a certain observation distance imposed by the higher vantage point.

The various finishes of the mirror-polished bridges adorned with De Bethune decorations highlight the silicon heart of the patented annual balance of Calibre DB2005, alongside a number of innovations and patents from the manufacture. This mechanical hand-wound movement beating at a frequency of 4 Hertz is equipped with a self-regulating twin barrel ensuring a 6-day power reserve, the famous triple pare-chute shock-absorbing system protecting the regulating organ, a silicon escape-wheel and a balance-spring with flat terminal curve ensuring optimal concentric development.

De Bethune - DB25 Quetzalcoatl

The DB25 Quetzalcoatl is a limited edition of 20 pieces. © De Bethune