Although I'd actually identified all distinguishing details of the original literary James Bond watch in early 2008, it would be another full year before this discovery was published in WatchTime magazine

Although I'd actually identified all distinguishing details of the original literary James Bond watch in early 2008, it would be another full year before this discovery was published in WatchTime magazine

It’s been 4 solid years since my discovery of the literary James Bond watch — in 2008.

The photo shown here was taken of Ian Fleming’s personal Rolex Explorer wristwatch upon receipt by the Imperial War Museum in London. Merely for record-keeping, inauspiciously captured without any special lighting, on a well-used art table.

Quite appropriate, I think.

Museum staff in turn provided this image to me as the first for use in definitive identification as the exact watch Ian Fleming specified for James Bond in the novel On Her Majesty’s Secret Service (Jonathan Cape, 1963).

My original research, interviews, and findings on this original James Bond watch were published a year later, in the February 2009 issue of WatchTime magazine.

Here are some of the highlights:

Ian Fleming’s stepdaughter, Fionn Morgan, stated that this was the only Rolex watch the Bond author ever owned.

The “expanding metal bracelet” on this watch does not have spring-based links. The reference was meant to describe its deployant clasp.

Although the Ian Fleming Rolex Explorer has been photographed as recently as 5 years ago with original dial intact, it has never been publicly displayed with that dial. This made it impossible to accurately identify the watch by merely viewing it on display at the Imperial War Museum (where it first appeared, for a year, during the Ian Fleming Centenary).

Caseback date and “more likely of two possible” case / serial numbers were made available.

Additionally— this “original literary James Bond watch” continue reading…