Solar Universal Sundial - 22 cm - Handcrafted in Italy - Pewter

Solar Universal Sundial - 22 cm - Handcrafted in Italy - Pewter

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Measuring the passage of time in relation to the movement of the sun was always the dream of astronomers in ancient times. Our pewter sundial can measure, with some precision, the time of almost all European cities regardless of their latitude. In the second half of the 17th century, the use of this instrument was considerably widespread among travellers and merchants. This device preserves the charm of measuring the passage of time, entrusting it to the movement of the sun.

The concept of this exquisite and intricate pewter piece, dates back into the beginnings of time, when humans started making sense of the passing of time by changes in the length and direction of their shadows.

One can only surmise that the first instrument to measure time must have been literally a stick pushed into the ground; a primitive precursor to the sun-dial, when time was measured by the slow lengthening of shadows and in which people arranged appointments "when your shadow will be ten times your foot" (Aristophanes c.400 BC).  

Universal solar clocks of this type would have been broadly used by the second half of the 17th Century, especially amongst travellers and merchants, aiding navigation and regulating both commercial and social life, beyond just sunrise and sunset.

Since the 20th Century, due to technological advancements in mechanical timepieces, from early analogue to these digital days, the solar clock has lost its importance in regulating social life. Yet it is in these very digital days, that the simple antiquity and nostalgic fascination of such a dignified simple, yet extremely clever, instrument makes a modest return.  

After almost a century of dark and silence, a surprisingly lively interest in solar clocks is now arising. The new attention for these forgotten instruments represents the instinctive nostalgia for an age in which days were counted in quarters of hour, work was carried out from sunrise to sunset.

The person who feels too compressed by today's culture of time frenzy will find in the object we are proposing a moment to relax while observing the passing of time, in the displacing of shadows, and, in a small way, grounding themselves, at one with the universe.

Full and detailed usage instructions are included. NB. The Cosi Tabellini Universal Solar Clock can be used anywhere in the Northern Hemisphere.

Size: 22 cm x 15 cm

Material Used: Pewter

Ref: CT0339201

Designer: Giorgio Tabellini

100% Lead Free

All Cosi Tabellini Pewter is 100% lead-free, so it is totally food & drink safe, and is both EU and US FDA approved.


Cosi Tabellini pieces come gift-boxed with a guarantee card and instructions on how to care for pewter.

See more: Clocks
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