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Antique Georgian Pocket Sundial Comass c.1840

Georgian or Victorian Wooden Sundial Compass c.1840

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A very good example of a Georgian or early Victorian wooden pocket sundial compass, also known as a 'Pantochronometer' or 'Magnetic Dial', dating from c.1840. The term pantochronometer was apparently coined in the early 19th century by Charles Essex & Co. of Clerkenwell, London. This particular type of floating sundial compass was patented by the London instrument maker Samuel Porter in 1824, who referred to these instruments as 'Magnetic Dials' and labelled them to that effect on the base. This sundial has its original label on the base describing it as a 'Magnetic Time Indicator and Compass'. Similar instruments are known to have been made in Europe in the late 18th century. Further details of the history of pocket sundials can be found at the excellent compassmuseum.com website.

This example features a beautifully turned wooden case and floating sundial compass card, incorporating a brass gnomon under a domed glass. The compass is in full working order and finds North well. Complete with its original instruction labels inside the lid and on the bottom of the wooden case.


Condition

In very good condition, full working order and finds North well. The wooden case is in very good condition, and the lid fits perfectly. The paper compass card and brass gnomon are in very good condition. The original domed glass is in very good condition, with just a little dust under the glass. The original instruction labels are present inside the lid and on the base.

Dimensions: 55mm diameter, 25mm depth