Astrolabe: dismounted obverse by Mahmud ibn Shawka al-Baghdadi

Astrolabe: dismounted obverse

Mahmud ibn Shawka al-Baghdadi

Fine art poster

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All products are printed in the UK, using the latest digital presses and a giclée printmaking process.

We only use premium branded inks, and colours are independently verified to last between 100 and 200 years.

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Astrolabe: dismounted obverse by Mahmud ibn Shawka al-Baghdadi zoom

Astrolabe: dismounted obverse

This small astrolabe is the only complete, preserved example from this maker. There is also a solitary mater by him in the Institute du Monde Arabe, Paris (IC no. 3534) and another mater with accompanying plates in the Rahni KoÔòá├▒ Museum, Istanbul (IC no. 4101).

The throne consists of pierced motifs delineated by silver inlay, identical on the front and back. The stem is rather tall and the suspension ring relatively small: both may not be original. The mater is devoid of markings and its surface is damaged in the lower right quadrant. The rete is cut for 23 dagger- and sickle-shaped star pointers, two of which together look like a pair of facing tiger's claws symmetrical to the vertical diameter. There are three plates covering latitudes 30├òÔòØ/40├òÔòØ, 33├òÔòØ/36├òÔòØ and 38├òÔòØ. On the back of the instrument, the signature of the maker is engraved along the rim of the lower-left quadrant: 'Made by Mahmud ibn Shawka al-Baghdadi in the year AH 694' (AH 694 approximates to 1294-95 AD). The alidade is a rather crude replacement, although old, but the peg, wedge and ring are probably original.
Mahmud ibn Shawka al-Baghdadi

  • Image reference: E5556-2

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