Sundials - World's Oldest Clocks

North American Sundial Society

Washington  

Sundial 204
State/Province:  District of Columbia Country:  USA
Dial Type:  Horizontal Condition:  Fair
Latitude:   38° 54.7' N Longitude:   77° 03.8' W
Location:
  • Tudor Place
    Flower Knot Garden
    1644 31st St NW, near R St.
 
Description:
  • Horizontal dial about 16 inch square made of bronze. Gnomon is 4.125 inch high, 5 inch long. Below gnomon is motto, "Horas non numero nisi serenas" (I only count sunny hours). House was built in 1805 and is now open to the public as a museum. Years before this property was opened to the public, a family member brought this dial from Crossbasket Castle in Scotland, the family seat. The lengthy inscription is probably a later addition, since it is unlikely that they would be quoting Whittier in Scotland. The gnomon angle is 39? 30', probably made for the Washington DC location. However, the dial plate has a latitude of about 48? N, certainly not Scotland. What is the true origin of this dial?
 
General Information:Inscription:
  • Owner: Tudor Place
  • 'With warning hand I mark time's rapid flight / from life's glad morning to its solemn night / Yet through the dear God's love I also show / There's light above me by the shade below.
  • Designer:
  • Builder:
 
References:
  • Geo. McDowell, Twelve Sundials of Washington, nr. 8