A Fine Early 20thC Stone Sundial by Maple & Co, London


Origin: English
Period: Early Twentieth Century
Provenance: Unknown
Date: c.1900-20
Height: 16.5 inches
Width 7 inches Square at Base / 9 inches Square at Top
Weight: 13.7 KGS

The brass gnomon within an integral engraved inscribed sundial with numbers and cardinal directions on a moulded composition pedestal stone base, the dial marked Maple & Co Ltd, London.

Beautifully weathered, the stone does have wear commensurate with its age and exposure to the elements as does the bronze dial. The gnomon is original and the whole of the dial has verdegris and signs of oxidisation. There is one repair to the lower plinth where it has been re-attached but this isn’t visible nor weak.

A sundial is surely the most ancient of all scientific instruments and is the earliest known form of time keeping with the the oldest known true sundial constructed in Egypt around 1500 BC. The Romans later perfected sundials and were the first to use them in gardens whilst in the medieval and Renaissance periods far more elaborate ornate sundials appeared.

The name Maple & Co is a flag bearer for quality and was once one of the largest and most successful antique furniture retailers and manufacturers in England especially in the late Victorian and Edwardian periods, specialising in fine quality antique furniture that was designed and produced in their own workshops.

Famous as cabinet makers, we cannot find any other records of sundials engraved by Maple & Co London, and this, coupled with the fact that it is very rare to have Maple and Co Ltd London engraved to any dial of any form whatsoever, makes this really quite a scarce piece of gardenalia.