Exhibition: The Astrolabe, East and West

The smallest astrolabe in Oxford

This is the museum's smallest astrolabe. The rete has only an arc for the zodiac, instead of the full circle: it has been 'folded' so as to serve for the full path of the sun, which means that the projection extends only to the equator instead of the tropic of Capricorn. Beneath this rete is a terrestrial planisphere, not a celestial grid, so that this instrument is closer to examples of the geographical astrolabe or 'speculum cosmographicum' displayed elsewhere in this case.
Astrolabe, Sicily, c.1300  (Inv. 40829)

Astrolabe, Sicily, c.1300 (Inv. 40829)
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