The following four lots, numbers 104 to 107, represent a selection of rare and unusual Astrolabe pocketwatches and wristwatches.
The Astrolabe was developed by ancient astronomers and for many centuries used by both astronomers and navigators. Mariners, if sufficiently skilled in navigation, could use the astrolabe to determine latitude, longitude, time of day and as an aid in making other calculations. It was much used on discovery voyages in the 15th century and was an important instrument until the invention of the sextant in the 18th century.
The more elaborate astrolabe features a star map, a zodiacal circle and various other useful or decorative devices. It allows to measure altitude over horizon and direction, to calculate the seasons, the movements of the zodiac and to foretell eclipses. Besides the position of the sun, the moon and the stars in the sky at any given hour as seen from the Earth, the highly complex instrument indicates sunrise and sunset, dawn and dusk, moonphases, moonrise and moonset, eclipses of sun and moon, the month, the day and the date.
SIGNED ULYSSE NARDIN, ASTROLABIUM GALILEO GALILEI, NO. 001, REF. 941-22, MOVEMENT NO. 903196, MANUFACTURED IN 1987
Ulysse Nardin. An extremely fine and rare 18K gold self-winding perpetual calendar astronomical keyless lever watch
Signed Ulysse Nardin, Astrolabium Galileo Galilei, No. 001, Ref. 941-22, movement no. 903196, manufactured in 1987
With gilt-finished lever movement, 33 jewels, the two-tone silvered and blue dial with analogical and perpetual representation of the Gregorian calendar, solar hand indicating solar hour, sunrise, sunset, dawn and dusk, indication for month, day, zodiac sign, location of the sun, equinox and solstice, cardinal points and temporal hours, moon hand indication of the rise and fall of the moon, phases of the moon, lunar position, gilt dragon hand indicating solar and lunar eclipses, the circular case with inlaid black enamel Roman numerals and Arabic 24 hours indication to the bezel, snap on back with engraved inscription, case and movement signed
50 mm. diam.