Chronograph is a mechanism that measures a period of time. It is often equipped with minute and sometimes hour counters. The chronograph seconds hand is almost always in the center of the dial.

The first chronographs were often with three times. They had a single pusher which allowed in chronological order, the start, the stop and the reset of the chronograph. The first chronographs until the beginning of the 20th century always had a column wheel, except for some counters which did not indicate the time in parallel. Also until the beginning of the 20th century the chronographs were always integrated chronographs.

In the XXth century some novelties appeared. The two-pusher chronograph, which unlike the three-beat chronograph (with one pusher) could be stopped and started as many times as one wished without going through the reset, was produced in large quantities. Also the shuttle chronograph appeared as a somewhat simplified version of the column wheel.

Towards the second half of the 20th century also appeared the chronograph module that could simply be placed between the dial and a standard movement for which did not have to be specifically prepared to be dedicated to a chronograph. These chronographs had their success, probably more by the aesthetics of their watches than the technical value of these mechanisms.

The year 1969 was a milestone for the chronograph with the arrival of the first self-winding chronographs. Before this they were all manually wound. Also from their creation on pocket models the dials were sometimes equipped with tachometers, pulsometers or telemeters.