mercoledì 27 agosto 2008

The Incredible Sundials from Troizen, Greece

The Incredible sundials from Troizen

The ancient city of Troizen, on the north coast of the Argolid peninsula opposite the island of Póros, was closely linked with Athens.Troizen was believed to be the birthplace of the Attic hero Theseus. Here too Hippolytos, son of Theseus and the Amazon Hippolyte, was dragged to death by his horses when he rejected the love of his stepmother Phaidra (cf. the "Hippolytos" of Euripides). When Athens was evacuated in 480 B.C. in face of the Persian threat many refugees, particularly women, fled to Troizen. The town continued to exist into Christian times.The site was excavated by French archeologists in 1890 and by a German team in 1932.The village of Trizína (commonly known as Damalá) can be reached from Náfplion via Ligourió, Trakhiá and the coastal villages of Fanári and Kalóni, turning right 9km/6mi beyond Kalóni into a side road (3km/2mi); or from Galatás (opposite Póros), going 7km/4.5mi west and then taking a side road on the left (3km/2mi).

The image show 3 ancient sundials found in the archaeologic excavation at Troizen, Greece. The schedule of the museum in which are preserved its, say: "Fragments of terracotta sundials dated to Late Antiquity". And the unknowed authors of the photo posted it like "1200 BC" date.

Now, the sundial at right seems to me not as old like the other 2 terracotta sundials. This have some "numerations" about the hour lines, like in the Bizantine era. The other two terracotta sundial seem more oldest.

But the strange fact: the little sundial at the top sx, (if it is really a sundial!) seem to have the horary space with the hour angles like a astronomical hours. Can this be a important source for the use of equal hours in the last antiquity?

Nicola Severino

The three terracotta sundials from Troizen
Click on the image for zoom

Below: The sundial from Ephesus Museum. The Numeration of hours
is the same. And in the sundial from Troizen, we read part of last 3 temporary hours (like is visible in the Ephesus zoom) above.

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