Diptych dial

Diptych dial for latitudes 42°-54° North. Rectangular diptych dial consisting of two leaves that fold flat when not in use. Leaf I is chipped at its right-hand corner (the non-hinged end). Leaf Ia displays a standard windrose except eight winds are named in Italian. Leaf Ib is as standard (see related terms) except the pin gnomon is missing from the length-of-day dial; Babylonian and Italian hours are not shown. Below this dial is an engraving of a town panorama with a decoration of leaves and fruit to the left and right. Holes for the string gnomon are numbered 42, 45, 48, 51 and 54. Below is a table of latitudes in two columns of European towns. There is no vertical dial.

Leaf IIa is as standard except there are five concentric hour scales around the compass. An adjustable string gnomon is attached between the inner surfaces of the two leaves. Magnetic variation is marked in the compass for 9° East of North and also 14° West of North. There is a single scaphe dial for Italian and Babylonian hours with a brass gnomon. Leaf IIb features a standard lunar volvelle except the brass disc is missing. Miller's makers mark - a fleur-de-lys - with Miller's initials appears twice at the hinge end.

This is one of the more elaborate of Miller's dials, adorned with fruit, flowers, putti-faced winds and a town panorama. On leaf IIb is the motto 'SOLI DEO GLORIA' (Glory to God alone), which is one that Miller often used on his instruments. On leaf IIa, it is signed 'LIENHART MNLLER 1628'.

For more information regarding this dial please refer to the OUP & NMM catalogue, 'Sundials at Greenwich'.

Object Details

ID: AST0476
Collection: Astronomical and navigational instruments
Type: Diptych dial
Display location: Not on display
Creator: Miller, Lienhart
Date made: 1628
Credit: National Maritime Museum, Greenwich, London, Caird Collection
Measurements: Overall: 14 x 71.5 x 110 mm

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