An exquisite gold pocket watch belonging to playwright Sholem Aleichem and featuring Hebrew numerals, is expected to fetch more than £370,000 when it goes under the hammer at Christie’s in New York on Wednesday night.

The 18k gold Zenith Grande Sonnerie watch is engraved with the Star of David and two hands greeting with a handshake, while the reverse is engraved with an enamel blue and black monogram, green wreath and white quill.

A German inscription inside the case reveals the watch was presented by David Wissotzky of Moscow to the iconic Yiddish writer in commemoration of the 10th Zionist Congress in Basel, 1911.

Known as the “Jewish Mark Twain”, Russian-born Aleichem is best known for his stories about Tevye the Dairyman, which later became the basis for the global hit musical, Fiddler on the Roof.