Gilded brass astrolabe, made by Humphrey Cole
London, England, AD 1574
The astrolabe is a multi-functional instrument which enables the user to perform such diverse tasks as timekeeping at day and night, surveying, determining latitude and casting horoscopes.
Some of the
markings on this instrument show the Flemish influence on early
English makers: for example, the star names are given with their
magnitudes and their corresponding astrological planetary
It is possible that this astrolabe once belonged to Henry, Prince of Wales (1594-1612) as an inscription in a later hand on the mater suggests, but the case bearing the monogram and Henry's coat of arms may be a later addition.
F.A.B. Ward, Catalogue of European scientif (London, The British Museum Press, 1981)
S. Ackermann (ed.), Humphrey Cole: mint, measureme (London, The British Museum Press, 1998)
Thickness: 6.000 mm