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Diptych Dial
Dated 1573; French
Ebony and ivory; 53 x 35 mm

This sundial is made up of an oval box of black wood, furnished with a cover. Inside the cover, decorated and painted with drawings and grotesques, the latitudes 43, 45 and 48? are indicated, corresponding to three holes. The indicated values would appear to locate the instrument in the area of France. A wire stretches between the cover and the base, which is equipped with a compass and hour lines marked on three concentric bands. When the box is opened, the shadow of the wire, inserted in the hole corresponding to the required latitude, is projected onto the hour lines.

The instrument belonged to the Medicean collection of scientific instruments, dating from the reign of Cosimo I de' Medici.

Istituto e Museo di Storia della Scienza, Firenze
Inventory no. 2489

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