The Museum of Time

Saracinesco has a unique outdoor Museum of Time, with fascinating models of ancient and unusual sundials displayed on street corners and in small squares.
The museum is a fascinating itinerary along the narrow and picturesque old streets of the ancient little town. The route leads to 6 models of sundials: a vertical and a horizontal sundials, a Lambert's sundial, a equatorial sundial, a cylindrical Shepherds Clock and a Sphere of Matelica.

Ingrandisce foto The vertical sundial

The vertical sundial (the most common vertical type of sundial) is the most monumental and from its dominant position high on the rock face of the fortress, can be seen for miles around. In the sundial is engraved the latin sentence "Carpe Diem".
A flight of steps on the left leads up to a terrace at the very top of the town, where there is a huge horizontal sundial set into the pavement and where you have a wonderfull view on the Aniene river valley.

Under the vertical sundial there is a more unusual type of sun clock known as a Lambert (German mathematician and physicist) clock. It takes the form of a circular basin of water, with the hours marked beneath the surface.
Following the route through the delicious historic center, there is an equatorial (also called an equinox) sundial, composed of two half hoops of stainless steel, which mark the hours and the meridian.

The Sphere of Matelica

In the main square of Saracinesco, where are located the historic church of S. Michele Arcangelo and the municipal building, you can admire a model of the cylindrical Shepherds Clock, called "shepherd's clock". This instrument is attributed to the 11th-century German monk Hermannus Contractus. The Saracinesco example is a large column of stainless steel, but normally these sun clocks are small and portable. They got their name, in fact, because shepherds often carried them.

The very "gemstone" of the museum is a reproduction of the intriguing Sphere of Matelica a small town of Matelica (in the Marche region of Italy) where in 1895 was discovered this unusual and ancient instrument dated at II century B.C.. A marble sphere of about 30 cm, it was marked with a series of lines, concentric circles, holes and letters of the Greek alphabet. Set in the correct position, it registered the hours of sunrise, the length of the day, the solstices and equinoxes and the passage of the sun through the constellations. There is only one other known example of this kind of sundial, which was found in Greece in 1939.


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Con il patrocinio del Comune di Tivoli, Assessorato al Turismo

Patrocinio Comune di Tivoli

Assessorato al Turismo