Negretti & Zambra, London


An equinoctial sundial, dating from the second half of the 19th century, housed in its original mahogany box and signed on the compass dial Negretti & Zambra London.

The instrument has retained most of its original lacquer.

Henry Negretti and Joseph Zambra became partners in 1850 and were one of the major makers of scientific instruments in the 19th and early 20th century.


The sundial’s scales are graduated for use in the northern and southern hemispheres and the dial plate is 3½ inches in diameter.

The hour plate, graduated from 4 am to 8 pm in 5-minute intervals, has a folding gnomon to the centre and a hinged latitude arm graduated at 1-degree intervals from 0 to 90 degrees.

The picture on the right shows the sundial in its box.

The base of the instrument contains a compass with two bubble levels set at right angles to each other, and has 3 adjustable feet for levelling the dial.

The compass is divided at 1-degree intervals and the compass needle can be locked when not in use.

Note the signature of Negretti & Zambra, London on the compass rose just above South.


The box measures 5¾ x 5¾ x 2½ inches.


The mahogany case has a paper label in the lid indicating the difference between solar time and mean time throughout the year.



Stock No. C1116

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