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Dent & Co. : [Pattern 20 Boat Compass]

Map: GLOBE416
Cartographer: Dent & Co.
Title: [Pattern 20 Boat Compass]
Date: c. 1908
Published: London
Width: 36 inches / 92 cm
Height: 30 inches / 77 cm
Map ref: GLOBE416
Handsome early 20th century "Pattern 20" ship’s compass by celebrated instrument makers Dent & Co. The compass and compass card is mounted within liquid-filled ebonised brass bowl with maker's marks signed and numbered 44083. It is gimbal-mounted within a temple-topped polished wood and brass case with a charming candle lamp with bevelled glass viewing port and carry handle, shade slide, hinged door to locking arm, complete with pasted instructions.

Established in 1814 by Edward John Dent (1790-1853), Dent & Co. Ltd. were innovative scientific instrument makers and horologists, or clock makers. Amongst their most famous builds are the Standard Clock at the Royal Observatory, Greenwich (1871) which was to keep “Greenwich Mean Time”, and the Great Clock for the Houses of Parliament, also known as “Big Ben” (1946). They were also responsible for creating precision chronometer used by influential navigators and explorers on their voyages, including the likes of Darwin when he was aboard the HMS Beagle (1831), and Livingstone (1850) and Stanley (1890) in Central Africa.