Watch collectors can be found all around the world, in so many different cities and countries. Although the heart of watchmaking culture is nestled in Switzerland, its influence has grown since the 15th century, branching out to include many far-flung locales. One of the most notable watch collectors in the world recently left this temporal plane, and he left behind a special subset of Rolexes that are coveted by collectors. That collector was Qaboos bin Said, who ruled Oman from 1970 until his death in 2020. He made a standard practice of gifting luxury watches to dignitaries.
What is the khanjar symbol and what does it mean?
A Khanjar Rolex is one that bears the royal crest of the Omani state, and it’s a unique reference that garners a fair bit of attention from Rolex fans. The khanjar can also be found engraved on a watch’s caseback, and the symbol found its way onto watches by Patek Philippe and Audemars Piguet, as well as several Rolex references. The khanjar symbol features a j-shaped dagger laid over two crossed swords. Depending on the watch, the symbol can be rendered in red, white, green, gold, or black on the dial, and is usually placed several millimeters above the index at 6 or below the index at 12.
It’s considered a “co-signed” watch, similar to Rolexes that bear the logos of Tiffany & Co. or the COMEX diving company. Because of their rarity, these types of dials are considered especially valuable.
Can collectors find authentic khanjar Rolexes to buy?
Collectors can find khanjar Rolexes to invest in, especially from trusted auctioneers such as Christie’s or Sotheby’s. Although they are somewhat rare, they do occasionally show up on the auction block. John Asprey, a jeweler in London, served as the provenance for many of these Rolexes, so the reference may be engraved with his name on the caseback. Khanjar symbols can also show up on a variety of different Rolexes references. Working with an AD or a vintage watch seller you trust is a way to verify the watch’s authenticity. Additionally, if the watch comes with an original box and papers, the serial number can serve as a clue to the watch’s origin.
Are khanjar Rolexes a good long-term investment?
Like any collectible item with a unique backstory, khanjar Rolexes can fetch a nice price on the secondhand market. Many collectors enjoy the history of this unique Rolex reference, and completists often want to add a khanjar Rolex to their collection. By being vigilant about checking for authenticity, you can safely invest in a khanjar Rolex as a unique addition to your own collection of watches. Prices for an authentic khanjar Rolex can range from 8k to more than 60k to secure the item.
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If you want to see many more images of the Khanjar Rolex, the guys at Rolex Passion Report show a ton here. If you are interested in learning more Omani history and its relationship with watches (as described by a person who lived in Oman) our pals at Quill and Pad wrote an interesting piece as well.
Cover Image: Courtesy of Phillips
Written By: Meghan Clark