The History Of Clocks – Lets Go On A Time Travel
We all have them in our homes. At times they control our lives too. They are also used to adorn the walls. Some of them form the pivotal attraction of a home. We seldom think about the clocks unless we have to change the battery or get them repaired. Let us learn about clocks and their history.
The History Of Clocks – The Beginning
The movement of the sun, the dawn and night and the passage of time intrigued humans. As the civilization progressed, it became important to calculate time. Humans used sundials to keep the track of time. This was the earliest method of telling time which was used in ancient Egypt and Iraq. Even Greeks and Romans used sundials. There were variations of sundial like water clock which was invented in Egypt in 1400 BC. Candle clocks were another timekeeping device.
For many centuries humans used these methods and even perfected them. However, around the end of 13th century, mechanical clocks were invented which can be considered as a big leap for the human civilization.
The Middle Age Of Clocks
We forget to mention one thing, the word clock came from the Latin word “clocca” which means bell. The earliest made clocks used weights as a power source which made them weak. In the 1200s, the mainspring was invented which partially solved the problem. Peter Hele, a German locksmith produced the first portable clock which made clocks widely popular in Europe.
Have you seen clocks with pendulums? This pendulum was introduced by Christiaan Huygens in 1657. These clocks had long cases which inspired the name grandfather’s clock.
It is interesting to study how different clocks were invented during this time like the cuckoo clock in 1775.
We had to wait till 1929 to get quartz crystal clock. During the 17th and 18th century, only wealthy people could afford clocks as they were costly. They were decorated with precious stones and metals. The custom of separating a day into 24 individual pieces came into vogue from Italy.
English clockmaker, John Harrison produced the Marine chronometer which changed the course of maritime history.
The Modern Age – 1900's And Beyond
With the development of modern metallurgy and increase in industrial production, clocks became affordable. The accuracy increased. The clocks became reliable, durable and a common item in most homes.
The journey of clocks is fantastic. It shows our inquisitiveness, perseverance and a love for technology. Today, we often use a clock as a decorative item. Next time, when you look at the clock in your living room or bedroom, just think of the years of hard work that has gone into making it.