Egyptian Merkhet

Made:
600 BCE in Egypt
'Merkhet', Ancient Egyptian astronomical timekeeping instrument Egyptian Merkhet (sundial) 'Merkhet', Ancient Egyptian astronomical timekeeping instrument 'Merkhet', Ancient Egyptian astronomical timekeeping instrument

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Creative Commons LicenseThis image is released under a CC BY-NC-SA 4.0 Licence

Buy this image as a print 

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License this image for commercial use at Science and Society Picture Library

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Creative Commons LicenseThis image is released under a CC BY-NC-SA 4.0 Licence

Buy this image as a print 

Buy

License this image for commercial use at Science and Society Picture Library

License

Creative Commons LicenseThis image is released under a CC BY-NC-SA 4.0 Licence

Buy this image as a print 

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License this image for commercial use at Science and Society Picture Library

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'Merkhet', Ancient Egyptian astronomical timekeeping instrument
Science Museum Group
© The Board of Trustees of the Science Museum

Science Museum Group Collection
© The Board of Trustees of the Science Museum

'Merkhet', Ancient Egyptian astronomical timekeeping instrument
Science Museum Group Collection
© The Board of Trustees of the Science Museum

'Merkhet', Ancient Egyptian astronomical timekeeping instrument
Science Museum Group Collection
© The Board of Trustees of the Science Museum

Merkhet, a timekeeping and surveying instrument, made in Ancient Egypt, 600BCE. Made in bronze with hieroglyphic text inlaid with electrum metal. The device has been fitted with a replica plumb bob, probably at some point during the early twentieth century.

The hieroglyphic inscription indicates that this instrument was the property of Bes, son of Khonsirtis (Khensardais var.), an astronomer priest of the god, Horus of Edfu in Upper Egypt. As a timekeeping instrument, it would have been used to determine the hours by the sun during the day and by onserving the passage of selected stars across the north-south meridian during the night. As a surveying instrument, it would have been used to layout axes of buildings.

Details

Category:
Time Measurement
Object Number:
1929-585
Materials:
bronze, electrum (gold-silver alloy) and textile
Measurements:
overall: 25 mm x 93 mm x 22 mm, 0.098 kg
type:
sundial
credit:
Dr Howard Carter