History of Science Museum: Collection Database Search


Italian hours

A group of dials, all except [1] from the 16th century, each telling the time in the system known as Italian hours, beginning with 0 and ending with 24 at successive sunsets. All have pin gnomons. The system is well suited to the scaphe dial [3, 4], where the hour lines are drawn on the inner surface of a hemisphere with the edge as hour 24, when the sun is on the horizon. In [5] lines for two latitudes are visible and three more are on the reverse; [4] is adjustable for latitude. The names for the winds of the Mediterranean are prominently visible on [2].

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