History of the Hour: Clocks and Modern Temporal Orders / Edition 2

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Overview

In this sweeping study of the organization of time, Dohrn-van Rossum offers fresh insight into the history of the mechanical clock and its influence on European society from the late Middle Ages to the industrial revolution. Detailing the clock's effects on social activity, he presents a vivid picture of a society regulated by the precise measurement of identical hours.

"In tracing the evolution of time consciousness with scholarship and skill . . . Dohrn-van Rossum evokes the many ways that the small moments of life have come to be reckoned with the passage of time."—Dava Sobel, Civilization

"Dohrn-van Rossum paints a highly nuanced picture of time's conquest of modern life."—Steven Lagerfeld, Wilson Quarterly

"This book is definitive in showing the clock's pervasive influence over European society."—Virginia Quarterly Review

"[A] delightful, excellently translated history."—Choice

"Dohrn-van Rossum has produced a persuasive and brilliantly documented new understanding of how modern time-consciousness arose."—Owen Gingerich, Nature

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Editorial Reviews

Library Journal
Today it is impossible to think of a life unregulated by clocks or a day structured other than in 24 60-minute hours. In the Middle Ages it was different, however, and changing. Historian Dohrn-van Rossum (Univ. of Bielefeld, Germany) examines in detail the technical developments that time-keeping mechanisms were undergoing, principally between 1300 and 1600, and the subtle interactions of these developments with European culture (political, religious, economic, and scientific). Some previous theories are debunked. Readable and thoroughly researched, this is required for history of science collections.Michael D. Cramer, Virginia Polytechnic & State Univ. Libs., Blacksburg
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780226155111
  • Publisher: University of Chicago Press
  • Publication date: 5/28/1998
  • Edition description: 1
  • Edition number: 2
  • Pages: 468
  • Sales rank: 1,049,744
  • Product dimensions: 6.00 (w) x 9.00 (h) x 1.10 (d)

Table of Contents

List of Figures
1: Introduction
2: The Division of the Day and Time-Keeping in Antiquity
3: The Medieval Hours (Hora)
4: Medieval Horologia and the Development of the Wheeled Clock
5: From Prestige Object to Urban Accessory: the Diffusion of Public Clocks in the Fourteenth and Fifteenth Centuries
6: Late Medieval Clockmakers
7: Clock Time Signal, Communal Bell, and Municipal Signal Systems
8: The Ordering of Time: The Introduction of Modern Hour-Reckoning
9: Work Time and Hourly Wage
10: Coordination and Acceleration: Time-Keeping and Transportation and Communications up to the Introduction of "World Time" Conventions
Abbreviations
Notes
Bibliography
Index

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