Exhibition: The Astrolabe, East and West


Astrolabes have often been prized by their owners as conspicuous marks of learning, affluence or position in society. While they were used by astronomers and astrologers, they are also recorded among the possessions of priests and princes. They could be commissioned by and customised for individuals, or given as gifts to patrons. Their status as desirable possessions has survived to the present: their ingenuity and beauty make them exceptionally attractive to collectors today.
Astrolabe, by Muhammad Muqim al-Yazdi, Persian, 1647/8   (Inv. 45747)
Astrolabe, by Georg Hartmann, Nuremberg, 1527 (Inv. 38642)
Astrolabe, Hispano-Moorish, c.1260  (Inv. 37878)
Astrolabe, by Giovanni Domenico Fecioli, Trento or Bologna, 1558  (Inv. 50257)
Table of thumbnail images with links to individual astrolabes
Astrolabe, by Thomas Gemini, London, 1559  (Inv. 42223)
Astrolabe, by 'Adb al-A'imma, Persian, 1712/13  (Inv. 40744)
Astrolabe, Oxford?, c.1350  (Inv. 47901)
Oxford owners
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