The Clock Tower
The Tower in Piazza dei Signori is famous for its Astronaut Clock, built in 1344 by Jacopo Dondi da Chioggia.
The Clock represents the Ptolemaic astronomical theory of a geocentric system that placed the Earth at the center of the Universe.
La Torre, 30 m high from the street level, it has 5 internal floors, of which the first 3 were designed to contain the parts of the clock mechanism, the other 2 constituted the residence of the watchmaker, custodian and maintenance man.
The cage movement is equipped with 2 “trains”: the train of time and the sound of the bell.
The dial has a circular shape: in the outer band the numbering of the hours is engraved with Roman characters, the inner band, in lead plates, shows the copper stars. The third band, instead, contains the zodiacal symbols in relief.
At the center is the planet Earth.
The lance that indicates the hours with the Sun is at the base, while the Moon appears on a circular window.
All the zodiac signs, except that of the missing balance, are finished with pure gold leaf.