North African Astrolabe

004247
  • Author:
  • Date: Late 19th Century
  • Medium: Brass
  • Condition: Very Good
  • Inches: 7 1/2" x 6"
  • Centimeters: 19.23 x 15.38
  • Price: $4,500.00
Description:

The astrolabe is an ancient astronomical computer used for solving problems relating to time and the position of the Sun and stars in the sky. The origins of the astrolabe were in classical Greece. Apollonius (c. 25 BC), the great codifer of conic sections, most likely created and used the astrolabe projection in his studies.

The astrolabe continued to be used through the centuries, and was introduced to the Islamic world by the mid-eight century. The astrolabe was inherently valuable in Islam because of its ability to determine the astronomically defined prayer times and as an aid in finding the direction to Mecca. Its production continued into the 19th century, particularly in the Arab world. Notable, there are a number of interesting stylistic differences between astrolabes from the eastern Islamic areas (the Mashriq), Northern Africa (the Maghrib), and Moorish Spain (al-Andalus). The Astrolabe above fits the style of the North African Astrolabes.
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