Saturday, July 31, 2010
The sundial was used many years ago to help us tell what time of day it was. By clicking on the above link you can find many interesting facts about sundials and pictures of several different types. According to the source, it most
likely was invented by William Oughtred around 1600 before its use became common throughout Europe.
Sundials were mentioned in at least two classic pieces of literature:
Chaucer the author of Canterbury Tales, reflects on the method of using shadow as a human “sundial” in his Parson's Tale.
“It was four o'clock according to my guess,
Since eleven feet, a little more or less,
my shadow at the time did fall,
Considering that I myself am six feet tall."
Similarly, the shepherd's dial is also referred to in Shakespeare's Henry VI, Part 3,
“O God! methinks it were a happy life
To be no better than a homely swain;
To sit upon a hill, as I do now,
To carve out dials, quaintly, point by point,
Thereby to see the minutes, how they run--
How many makes the hour full complete,
How many hours brings about the day,
How many days will finish up the year,
How many years a mortal man may live.”
After reading all this information about shadows and their history I certainly feel less silly as I snap away at shadows. :-) How about you? Please join us for Shadow Shot Sunday, there’s sure to be a few you will enjoy!