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Early wrist watch by Waltham, worn by soldiers in World War I (German Clock Museum).
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A modern wristwatch.

A watch is a small timepiece intended to be carried or worn by a person. It is designed to keep working despite the motions caused by the person's activities. A wristwatch is designed to be worn on a wrist, attached by a watch strap or other type of bracelet. A pocket watch is designed for a person to carry in a pocket.

Watches evolved in the 17th century from spring-powered clocks, which appeared as early as the 14th century. The first watches were strictly mechanical, driven by clockwork. As technology progressed, mechanical devices, used to control the speed of the watch, were largely superseded by vibrating quartz crystals that produce accurately timed electronic pulses.<ref name="The History of Watches">{{#invoke:citation/CS1|citation |CitationClass=web }}</ref> Some watches use radio clock technology to regularly correct the time. The first digital electronic watch was developed in 1970.<ref>Pulsar LED Smithsonian</ref>

Most inexpensive and medium-priced watches, used mainly for timekeeping, are electronic watches with quartz movements.<ref name="The History of Watches"/> Expensive collectible watches, valued more for their elaborate craftsmanship, aesthetic appeal and glamorous design than for simple timekeeping, often have purely mechanical movements and are powered by springs, even though these movements are generally less accurate and more expensive than electronic ones. Various extra features, called "complications", such as moon-phase displays and the different types of tourbillon, are sometimes included.<ref>Wikipedia: sections under Functions.</ref> Modern watches often display the day, date, month and year, and electronic watches may have many other functions. Time-related features such as timers, chronographs and alarm functions are common. Some modern designs incorporate calculators, GPS<ref name="Epson">{{#invoke:citation/CS1|citation |CitationClass=web }}</ref> and Bluetooth technology or have heart-rate monitoring capabilities. Watches incorporating GPS receivers use them not only to determine their position. They also receive and use time signals from the satellites, which make them essentially perfectly accurate timekeepers, even over long periods of time.

The study of timekeeping is known as horology.

Watch sections
Intro  History  Movement   Display   Talking watches  Handedness   Functions    Uses    See also    References    Further reading    External links   

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