Skip to comments.One of the world's oldest sun dial dug up in Kings' Valley
Posted on 03/19/2013 6:41:34 AM PDT by Red Badger
During archaeological excavations in the Kings' Valley in Upper Egypt a team of researchers from the University of Basel found one of the world's oldest ancient Egyptian sun dials. The team of the Egyptological Seminar under the direction of Prof. Susanne Bickel made the significant discovery while clearing the entrance to one of the tombs.
During this year's excavations the researchers found a flattened piece of limestone (so-called Ostracon) on which a semicircle in black color had been drawn. The semicircle is divided into twelve sections of about 15 degrees each. A dent in the middle of the approximately 16 centimeter long horizontal baseline served to insert a wooden or metal bolt that would cast a shadow to show the hours of the day. Small dots in the middle of each section were used for even more detailed time measuring. The sun dial was found in an area of stone huts that were used in the 13th century BC to house the men working at the construction of the graves. The sun dial was possibly used to measure their work hours. However, the division of the sun path into hours also played a crucial role in the so-called netherworld guides that were drawn onto the walls of the royal tombs. These guides are illustrated texts that chronologically describe the nightly progression of the sun-god through the underworld. Thus, the sun dial could also have served to further visualize this phenomenon. During this year's excavation in cooperation with the Egyptian authorities and with the help of students of the University of Basel over 500 mostly fragmentary objects that had been recovered in former seasons were documented and prepared for further scientific examination. This also includes all the material of the lower strata of tomb KV 64 found in 2012. Inside the roughly 3500 year old tomb Basel researchers had discovered a sarcophagus that was holding the mummy of a woman named Nehemes-Bastet.
Significant find: After thousands of years the Egyptian sun dial was brought back to light. Credit: University of Basel
Time for a GGG Ping!............
That’s lke soooooo cool
The segments don’t appear to be all the same size. The section to the right of straight up is wider. I would assume a job as important as grave construction would have a very accurate time piece. So I would guess that this is a ‘cheap’ sundial used by someone other than the foreman. Or the extra fat segment right after noon is the siesta and lunch period (only half joking).
Cheap? Probably made in China.........
Maybe it was a union made sundial.........
There’s only 12 segments, how does it work at night?
You turn it upside down.........
Was it still ticking?
As surely as the Sun rises in the East and sets in the West..........
Useful for timing an Obama speech.
All New Kingdom stuff. After the fall of the Old Kingdom., the Egyptians lost most of their knowledge. It must have been relatively easy, during the First Intermediary Period, to kill off the few thousand who knew anything at the end of the Old Kingdom.
This stuff is just the leftovers which survived the 1,000 yesrs between the Old and New kingdoms.
Did they check the time to see exactly when it stopped?
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