The Clock Tower of St Andrew's

The tower clock more ancient of the world, still in working order from 1389

The ancient tower of St Andrew's, built in the Romanesque period just after 1000ce, houses a mechanical clock dating from 1386 originally from the Palazzo Pretorio which burned down in 1817. It is claimed to be the oldest working model of its type in the world and is reputedly the work of Dondi, based on the 'dogs leg' styling of the lower of the 4 metal mounts. This family of celebrated clockmakers from the 1300s lived in Chioggia for many years before transferring to Padua where they came into contact with the most celebrated personalities of The Veneto and Tuscany of the time.
On the outside of the tower, reduced in height after the War of Chioggia, the mechanism of the clock offers a decorative element thanks to a sunburst pattern surround in Istrian stone showing 12 roman numerals. At the centre of the face is a flaming sun from which extents a long ray, which in turn indicates the hour.


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