SILVER POCKET SUNDIAL WITH CASE Butterfield AParis Ca. 1722-1724 France



Signed: Butterfield AParis
Circa 1722-1724

French, profusely engraved horizontal silver sundial, consisting of a compass (to position the instrument) and a collapsible triangular gnomon or shadow caster. The gnomon has an adjustable pointer in the shape of a bird with which the instrument can be set for the latitude of the place where the time is to be established. There are various chapter segments engraved in the top of the base plate, with the signature of the maker in the centre: Butterfield AParis.

There are four different hour indications on the octagonal brass plate with black Roman and Arabic numerals around the compass to be used for the various latitudes, viz. 40, 46, 49 and 52. The compass also has a special scale to determine the magnetic declination. The pocket sundial can be taken on a journey in an octagonal travelling case, on the inside lined with green velvet and on the outside covered with black shark leather.

Dimensions: 5.8 x 6.5 x 1 cm.
Dimensions travelling case: 7.7 x 7 x 2 cm.

-Tardy, Dictionnaire des Horlogers Fran├žais, Paris, 1970, p. 103.
-Brian Loomes, Watchmakers and Clockmakers of the World, London, 2010, p. 126.

A similar object is depicted in:
Tijd voor klokken, verhalen rond een verzameling, Walburg pers, p. 74 and 75.

The maker
Butterfield was a well-known instrument maker, working in Paris around 1700. He worked as an engineer for the king and made mathematical instruments and sundials. He died in 1724.

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