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illustration Tourbillon



Part of speech: noun

Origin: French, 15th century


Any part of a machine with a spiral movement.


A whirlwind.

Examples of Tourbillon in a sentence

"This antique watch has a tourbillon that prevents gravity from throwing off its timing."

"Watches featuring tourbillon movements can easily cost more than $10,000."

About Tourbillon

“Tourbillon” is a French loanword meaning “whirlwind.”

Did you Know?

A “tourbillon” is a complicated piece of miniature machinery often present in the world’s most expensive watches. This spiral machinery was developed to counteract the various shifts in balance and gravitational angle that can affect the functionality of a watch. Tourbillons made watches accurate even on the wrists of the most vigorously arm-waving folks. The science of timekeeping has evolved to create mechanical watches that remain accurate without the need for a tourbillon, but the finicky engineering is still present in many luxury watches.

illustration Tourbillon

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