Thursday, July 31, 2008

Hands off the Astrolabe!

British Museum buys medieval astronomy tool

A mere toy when compared to the Greek Antkythera Mechanism:

...LONDON - A rare astronomy tool that helped medieval scientists tell time will remain in Britain after the British Museum scrambled to come up with the money to buy it. The brass device, called an astrolabe quadrant, had been sold at auction last year, and the museum was outbid. But money from the National Heritage Memorial fund, The Art Fund and the British Museum Friends helped the museum purchase it recently for 350,000 pounds ($700,000)...

But seriously, it's sad that museums have to scramble to scrape up funds to preserve national treasures. Astrolabes were a critical tool in astronomy and astrology. A similar situation is happening at the world's libraries. Over at Wildhunt, there's an interesting post about the possible breakup of an occult book collection:

"...A remarkable collection of rare and ancient volumes on the arts of magic and summoning ghosts could be broken up and sold off due to a funding crisis. The Harry Price Library of Magical Literature, based at the University of London, is the UK's largest of its kind ...

No comments: