Sundials - World's Oldest Clocks

North American Sundial Society

Selected Sundials of Ontario

Click on any photo or city name to get more sundial details and more photos.

 
 
Toronto Ontario Canada Horizontal Dial 596
A 210 cm diameter horizontal dial of blue granite with a 56 cm high stainless steel gnomon. In addition to showing local time, the declination line that touches the base of the gnomon traces the path of the shadow on June 23 (date of the 1985 Air India terrorist-bomb air crash) and also marks solar noon at the crash site near Akahista, Ireland where there is a similar memorial sundial. Stones forming the pedestal represent all of the Provinces and territories of Canada, and the countries of India, Ireland, Japan and the United States of America.
 
 
Toronto Ontario Canada Equatorial Dial 364
The face of this equatorial dial is an arc of a sphere 2 meters in diameter. A nodus on the polar gnomon casts a shadow indicating solar declination. Aligned with the dial is a 15 meter meridian line which passes through the site of the transit instrument of the former Toronto Observatory.
 
 
Toronto Ontario Canada Horizontal Dial 128
Approx 55 ft square Stone (concrete?) 4AM-8PM marked in Arabic numerals, half and quarter hours marked with lines. A huge dial. The gnomon is sunk below the outer level by a series of steps. The hours are marked by stone slab 'seats' spaced around the outer square. There are two seats at the noon position to allow for the width of the gnomon. This dial may have been destroyed by now in a rebuilding project.
 
 
Toronto Ontario Canada Armillary Dial 413
Armillary dial about 4 foot in diameter. Gnomon rod appears to be missing. Raised Roman numbers show the hours from V in the morning to VII at night. Equatorial strip is about 6 inches wide.
 
 
Toronto Ontario Canada Equatorial Dial 414
An equatorial dial with rod gnomon bent into a half analemma. Raised Roman numerals along the equatorial arc from V in morning to VII at night. Gnomon held by semi-circular arc with pleasing proportions that match the equatorial arc.
 
 
Toronto Ontario Canada Horizontal Dial 433
A striking 30 inch diameter horizontal dial. The equation of time correction is made by a slight rocking of the gnomon about the polar axis, controlled by a manual date index and a hidden cam mechanism. At the south end of the gnomon on the dial is a sunburst design. The octagonal pedestal is ornately covered with six copper plates. Each showing two zodiac signs in relief, forming a frieze 20 inches high around the pedestal.
 
 
Toronto Ontario Canada Horizontal Dial 435
A small bronze 8 inch diameter horizontal dial, sitting upon a granite column of equal diameter. The dial plate has simple radiating hour lines and Roman numerals. No minute or quarter hour marks. The gnomon may have broken off at some time and been repaired, since it is now held on by a rather unsightly bronze angle iron.
 
 
Torre Coahuila Mexico Analemmatic Dial 509
An analemmatic dial with major axis of 18 feet built of many different types of stone from the Torre?n Jard?n area, including white and red marble, travertine, yellow and black flagstone, and limestone. Insets of gray stone hold the hour markers from 5am to 7pm. The finished dial has been set in desert plants, native to the region, including: Candelilla, Gobernadora, Lechuguilla, Sangre de drago, Huevo de toro, Biznaga, Pitaya, Corona de espinas, Nopal rastrero, and Cardenche. These are all protected desert species. The dial has a compass rose and six disk-shaped maps at the east and west sides to show the course of sunrise/sunset across the Mexican Republic on the solstices and equinox.
 
 
Torreon Coahuila Mexico Vertical Dial 487
This is a stone cube 3.5 m high with four vertical dials. Each dial face is about 2.2 m high by 1.25 m wide The South and North faces have Arabic numerals to indicate solar time from 6am to 18hrs, with marks every 15 minutes. The East face has numerals from 6am to 12pm and the West face complements from 12pm to 18hrs. These faces have half hour marks. The South face has seven declination lines, constellation dates, analemma line, zodiac symbols, and equinoctial and solstice lines. A curve to indicate light and shadow hours all the year is on each face. A square base on quarry. At the north-east corner are the carved names of the designer Miguel Bertran de Quintana and builder Cirilo Nunez. Note: because of the sundial size and latitude, it was necessary to extend the four vertical faces of the sundial into the horizontal plane to indicate the summer solstice line and 11:30 and noon hours of summer.
 
 
Towson Maryland USA Horizontal Dial 334
A bronze horizontal dial made inscribed "1715". About 10 inches in diameter with an ornately decorated dial plate. The original gnomon has been removed and a modern garden sundial placed over the original dial face; little of the original face is visible. The dial is on a square stone that sits atop a plane square cut stone pillar.
 
 
Traverse City Michigan USA Analemmatic Dial 494
This beautiful analemmatic dial was built as part of the American Society of Landscape Architects' 100 years/100 Parks project. A colored concrete pad was poured on the north/south axis and scored joints for each month. Stainless steel plates show the name of the months. On either side of the concrete pad are dry laid flagstones with creeping thyme in the joints. Hour markers are 12 inch diameter colored concrete bases with numbers cut from stainless steel. A stained glass sun plaque at the top of the month axis was made by a local artisan. Total dial size is about 10 x 20 feet.
 
 
Trois Rivieres Quebec Canada Vertical Dial 66
A declining vertical dial approximately 6 feet wide and 8 feet tall of painted wood. Diol declines 58? west of south. Dial includes a two-lined analemma noon mark that shows noon corrected for EOT. Hour lines with Roman numerals show local time from 10 AM to 7 PM. Dial is located about 30 feet high on a wall, above an alcove with a statue of the Virgin Mary. The gnomon length is correct for the shadow of the tip to fall on the noon mark. Dial furniture includes a lunar crescent and a depiction of a beaver carrying a tree branch, in a classic French tradition and similar to dials of Zarbula's overall design.
 
 
Tucson Arizona USA Equatorial Dial 4
A bronze equatorial dial approximately 2 ft. in diameter designed by R. Newton Mayall. Mayall stated, "When I was asked to design the sundial in front of the Museum at Kitt Peak I was more than pleased, for it gave me a chance to work a semblance of astronomy into it. The design reflects the great telescope nearby, with its base and fork type mounting, the dial itself being the "telescope"." The dial surface is a half-cylinder whose inner surface has seven date lines and 15 minute apparent solar timelines. A thin rod supports a 1/4 inch spherical nodus in the middle of the sundial directly above the point where the 12 noon line crosses the equinox line. The shadow of the nodus tells both the apparent solar time and the date. The dial is in fair condition, with the brass gnomon rod and nodus sagging, giving rise to a noticeable error in time and date readings. There is a separate plaque in front of the dial that gives instructions for obtaining standard time using a table of the Equation of Time corrected for the dial longitude.
 
 
Tucson Arizona USA Sun Circle Dial 11
A "Stonehenge" or sun circle dial designed by Chris Tanz, Susan Holman, Paul Edwards and with the help of Will Grundy and sponsored by the Pima County Flood Control and Transportation Dept. The structure uses a broken circle of walls to create designs made of light based on the movement of the sun. The circle, 50 feet in diameter with 8 foot walls is modeled loosely on the Casa Rinconada kiva ruins in Chaco Canyon, N.M. The walls are of integrally colored concrete block, concrete, and flagstone. Lines on a bronze plaque indicate north and south and the direction of sunrise and sunset on the equinoxes and solstices. Holes in the wall do the same. Solar noon is marked when sunlight comes through a slot in the South wall and passes a line on the floor.
 
 
Tucson Arizona USA Horizontal Dial 12
This concrete and adobe brick horizontal dial is approximately 8 1/2 feet in diameter with a triangular gnomon 25 x 32 inches. This is a large, but very plain sundial except for the shiny chrome plated gnomon. It lacks numerals, but has hour points and shows the cardinal points. The dial is corrected for longitude. The pedestal is missing some bricks and is adorned with graffiti.
 
 
Tucson Arizona USA Horizontal Dial 14
A 25 inch circular engraved horizontal dial in a large irregular stone. Surrounding the dial on the stone are zodiacal signs and a beautiful engraved drawing of the surrounding mountains. The designer, John Carmichael, calls these dials "horizontal string heliochronometers" since the gnomon is a brass cable held very straight under tension from a heavy counterweight which is suspended from a brass hinged lever.
 
 
Tucson Arizona USA Vertical Dial 533
A declining vertical stained glass "Gecko" sundial 58 x 20 inches consisting of 153 colored glass pieces and exterior rod gnomon with triangular base. Paintings on 11 glass pieces use vitreous kiln-fired enamels and stains. Dial and four adjacent panels consisting of 540 glass pieces are set in bay window overlooking succulent garden containing additional sundials. Dial glass panel includes painting of a Tucson Banded Gecko stalking fly, a star field, sun face and solar noon mark. Dial declines 27.4? east of south. Contact owner John Carmichael to arrange viewing.
 
 
Tucson Arizona USA Vertical Dial 544
Four vertical dials on the faces of a 100-inch tall redwood cupola on the roof of a private residence. The 21-inch dial faces are kiln-fired porcelain on steel; the bezels and gnomons are copper. The dials are longitude corrected for MST. Three dials have solar noon marks.
 
 
Tucson Arizona USA Vertical Dial 566
A vertical 44x92 inch dial declining 4.53? east of south painted on the rough textured stucco wall of a private home. The 2x4 inch tall conical horizontal gnomon is gold plated brass. The dial face is hand painted with elastomeric acrylic exterior house paint. The horizontal conical gnomon optimizes the nodus shadow at the location low latitude to show time and date. Dial face shows date/declination lines, solar noon mark and hour, 1/2-hour and 15 minute lines. To arrange viewing, contact owner Christina McVie.
 
 
Tucson Arizona USA Analemmatic Dial 825
This nearly 14-foot wide analemmatic human sundial replaces the previous sundial at the same location. The previous dial by an unknown designer had several design errors and was in poor condition. The Flandrau Planetarium replace it, choosing a sundial with a blue background and white hour numerals. Dial Markings include quarter hour marks, Solar Noon Mark, Date Line with one week marks, Alignment Marker for Sunrise and Sunset (Bailey Points) with Solstice and Equinox lines, and the four Cardinal Points of the compass. The dial has a built-in longitude correction and shows Mountain Standard Time when readings are adjusted for The Equation of Time