Clepsydra Oldest and most impressive timekeeping clock created by the Babylonians in 1400 BC and perfected by the Chinese and Egyptians later on, commonly called Clepsydra, a word derived from Klepto (thief) and siderial (departure time) leaving a joint meaning of “stolen days”.
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- 1 History
- 1 Features
- 2 Water clock
- 3 Advances of hourglass clocks
- 2 Sources
Hourglasses have existed in Babylon and Egypt around the 1st century BC 16. Other regions of the world, including India and China , also have the earliest evidence of water clocks, but the earliest dates are less certain.
Some authors, however, write about the water clocks that appear as early as 4000 BC in these regions of the world. There were also countless breakthroughs, spreading through Byzantium and the Islamic era, eventually making its way back to Europe . Regardless, the Chinese developed their own advanced water clocks in 725 AD, passing their ideas to Korea and Japan .
Clepsydra is one of the most beautiful words in the language. There are beautiful words not so much for their aesthetic structure as for their semantic content, which somehow affectively relate to the person who uses them. Mother, for example, or grandfather, and even better grandfather, are of this type, and have the power to summon very deep feelings. But there are others that produce a pleasant aesthetic effect, even without knowing its meaning. This is the case of hummingbird , nightingale, chrysalis, gladiolus, ephemeral, alabaster, casserole and hourglass, among others.
The idea is that the lower container steals the water (or sand) from the upper one. The ancient invention of the hourglass -of Mesopotamian origin- is based on the principle that a given quantity of water always requires the same time to pass drop by drop from one container to another. This mechanism is then a stopwatch and not a clock, since it marks a certain amount of time but does not tell the time.
The hourglass has a symbolic value, because it is the instrument that most visibly represents, with the fall of water or sand, the constant flow of time. They were ceramic vessels and were filled with water up to a certain level, they had a hole in the base through which the water came out at a certain speed, and this marked a time.
Inside the vessel there were several marks, each of them was a different time, as the water emptied, it marked the time. These clocks were used in Athens also, in the courts, they marked the time available to speak. They used to be used by politicians and lawyers. In Egypt they were used especially at night, when the shadow clocks did not work.
Clepsydra is the water clock, which measures time based on how long it takes for a quantity of water to pass from one container to another, of equal dimensions, below. By extension, the hourglass has also been called the hourglass, with which time is measured by means of two vials or conical containers, of glass or crystal, joined by the vertex, so that the fine sand contained in the from above go slowly, but continuously to below. What takes time is the unit of time.
The water clock was the most accurate and commonly used timing device for thousands of years, until it was replaced by the most accurate pendulum clock in seventeenth-century Europe .
Clepsydra has a symbolic value, because it is the instrument that most visibly represents, with the fall of water or sand, the constant flow of time.
Advances of hourglass watches
The first water clocks or hourglasses were ceramic vessels, these were filled with water up to a certain level, they had a hole in the base through which the water came out at a certain speed, and this marked a time.
The vessel inside had marks, where each one was a different time, as the water emptied, it marked the time.
Another type of hourglass, which may have been the forerunner of the modern watch, had a wheel connected to the float and when the water level changed the wheel turned to indicate the time in a marking system.
In 1434 , after two years of research, Sejong and his technician Chang Yong-shil invented an automatically eye-catching clespidra as the water held in upper glasses dripped synchronously, lowering the levels, stirring an iron ball and causing it to fall through an opening to activate a device that struck a metal drum every hour and a gong every minute. With the thousands of hourglasses, whether of water, metals or other materials, no hourglass has come to our times.