A timepiece that once belonged to King Richard II was handed down through a family now living in Australia. They rediscovered it some time ago in a bag of old pipe fittings. Recently, the family sent it to the British Museum where it was identified as an “equal hour horary quadrant” which tracks time in hourly segments. The King’s badge is engraved. Bonham’s expects it to bring around $300,000 at its Dec.13 sale in London.
Dated 1396, Bonham’s reports the quadrant is the second earliest British scientific instrument in existence, just after the British Museum’s 1326 “Chaucer astrolabe.” How a distant ancestor of the Queensland family came to possess the time piece was not reported.