The tourbillon – or, as it literally translates, the “whirlwind” – has long been considered the ultimate achievement in mechanical watchmaking. Originally, this most exclusive of all watch complications was intended to offset the gravitational error inevitable in an oscillating system with a balance and spring by distributing the error evenly over a single plane. The solution: to put the balance, pallets and escape wheel in a tiny cage that would then rotate around its own axis once every minute. The construction of this mechanism represents an enormous challenge, and results in a filigree work of art consisting of 82 parts. In the Portuguese Tourbillon Mystère Rétrograde, the tourbillon at “12 o’clock” appears to come alive and is the focal point of the entire dial.