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Inventory no. 52209 - Former Display Label


Signed, on the mater, ".F. EGNATIVS DANTES." beneath a coat-of-arms; not dated. Gilt brass. Diam.: 410 mm.

Rete for 31 stars; unusual features of the design of the rete are the circle representing the Tropic of Cancer, and the equinoctial circle divided into 360° and supported by an X-shaped ornament. Similar features are found in other astrolabes by Danti. No loose plates, the mater being engraved as a plate for latitude 43°40' (probably for Florence). The rim is engraved with the usual scale of equal hours, together with a scale of degrees and the Italian names of the winds associated with the four cardinal points. Within the rim revolves a second scale of hours, numbered 1-24; this scale was used when it was necessary to know the time in either Italian or Babylonian hours. The back is engraved with the usual scale of degrees, within which is a universal projection of the type associated with Juan de Rojas.

The maker of this astrolabe, Egnazio Danti, was born at Perugia in 1536 and died at Alatri in 1586. He was, successively, teacher of mathematics to the son of Cosmo di Medici, a public lecturer in Florence, Papal Cosmographer and Bishop of Alatri. He published several works on mathematical instruments and was a renowned cartographer.

Formerly in the Roussel Collection.

[IC 180]
Lewis Evans Collection

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