Christopher Schissler (Biographical details)

Christopher Schissler (scientific instrument maker; goldsmith/metalworker; German; Male; c.1531 - 1608)

Also known as

Schissler, Christopher; Schissler, Christoph


Instrument maker Christoph (or Christopher) Schissler was born about 1531 and set up a workshop in the early 1550s. He became the most renowned of Augsburg instrument makers and his workshop supplied instruments of the highest quality, including astrolabes, sundials, quadrants, celestial and terrestrial globes, armillary spheres, astronomical compendia, surveying and drawing instruments. Many of Schissler's instruments were intended for foreign buyers; for instance, a number of his surviving sundials are laid out for English or Italian latitudes. In 1571 Schissler travelled to the Dresden court of August I, the Elector of Saxony, in order to set up and demonstrate his instruments for the prospective buyer. Another journey, via Vienna, was undertaken in 1583 to the court of Emperor Rudolf II in Prague. From 1580 onwards, Schissler became more involved with surveying, which is also reflected in the type of instruments produced by his workshop. A survey of the town of Augsburg was undertaken between 1598 and 1602, and afterwards a similar survey of the area around Augsburg kept him occupied until his death.
Some hundred instruments of Christoph Schissler, dated between 1546 and 1605, have been preserved. His eldest son Hans Christoph Schissler jr followed in his father's footsteps and also became an instrument maker. Christoph Schissler died on 14 September 1608.


Zinner 1967, pp. 503-20, and pp. 685-6.
Bobinger, M, Alt Augsburger Kompaßmacher: Sonnen, Mond und Sternenuhren, astronomische und mathematische Geräte, Räderuhren, Augsburg, 1966, pp. 99-118 and pp. 299-348.
idem, Christoph Schissler der Ältere und der Jüngere, Augsburg, 1954.