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Crafted by Time

September 22, 2019

Once the centrepiece of any painstakingly curated English Country Garden, sundials can seem like an object left behind by the instantaneous gratification and mechanical ticking of modern life.

In fact the humble sundial has quite literally survived the test of time... notwithstanding the occasional cloudy day. The first unearthed evidence of sundials dates back to ancient Babylonian “shadow clocks” from 1500BC where they were used for household timekeeping.

Since then, everyone from the Egyptians and Romans to Italian Jesuits and the Georgians have championed this ingenious timekeeping device.

Even in the 21st century the sundial continues to be reinvented. When the Taipei 101 skyscraper opened in Taiwan in 2004 it was the tallest and one of the most sophisticated buildings in the World... and thanks to the deliberate design of the adjoining park, the shadow of the building acts as a giant horizontal timepiece for the city’s 2.7 million inhabitants.