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Inventory no. 47553 - Former Display Label

German VERTICAL DISC DIAL
c. 1570

Gilt brass. Unsigned and undated; probably made at Nuremberg. Like no.G. 16, also shown here, this is an example of the type of vertical disc dial related to the vertical plate and cylinder dials.

This instrument consists of a plate with a raised edge (similar to an astrolabe mater) into which fit two other plates, prevented from turning (as in many astrolabes) by lugs on the plates which fit into a notch in the edge of the mater.

The mater and one side of one of the plates are left blank. The other side of this plate is engraved with ordinary hour-lines for the latitude of Nuremberg, and with a coat-of-arms in which the charges on the escutcheon have been effaced. The other plate is engraved on one side (the side shown) with hour-lines for Italian-hours, and with a figure of the sun, surrounded by the Signs of the Zodiac, etc., inscribed, "Curriculum meum perficiam donec aduenerit dominus". The other side of this plate has hour-lines for unequal or planetary hours, and with a table showing the ruling planets of each hour of every day and night of the week.

On the back of the instrument is a Zodiac/calendar scale (Old Style), showing also the four seasons; and concentric circular scales, used in conjunction with indexes on the gnomon-arm, showing times of sunrise and sunset and the length of day and night.

The engraving on this instrument, partly in intaglio, partly in relief, is unusual.

[G.15]
Lewis Evans Collection

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