“Winchester Cathedral is a Church of England cathedral in Winchester, Hampshire, England. It is one of the largest cathedrals in England, with the longest nave and greatest overall length of any Gothic cathedral in Europe. Dedicated to the Holy Trinity, Saint Peter, Saint Paul, and Saint Swithun, it is the seat of the Bishop of Winchester and centre of the Diocese of Winchester. The cathedral is a Grade I listed building.” –
The clock is 15 feet (4.6 m) in diameter with three separate copper dials revolving at different speeds and displays the following information:
Day of month
Position of the sun in the ecliptic
Twelve signs of the zodiac
Number of days elapsed since the beginning of the year
Phases of the moon
Age of the moon in days
Hour when the moon crosses the meridian and thus high water at London Bridge.
The latter information was of great importance to those visiting this Thames-side palace from London, as the preferred method of transport at the time was by barge, and at low water London Bridge created dangerous rapids.
The clock was restored in 1711 by William Herbert. In 1831 the astronomical dial had been removed, and the mechanism was replaced with that from a clock dating from 1799 from St James’s Palace. In 1879 the astronomical dial was found, and Gillett & Bland manufactured a new clock movement.
The clock was fully restored in 2007 and 2008 by the Cumbria Clock Company in time for the 500th anniversary of the accession of King Henry VIII.
In the following century, King William III’s massive rebuilding and expansion project was intended to rival Versailles. Work ceased in 1694, leaving the palace in two distinct contrasting architectural styles, domestic Tudor and Baroque. While the palace’s styles are an accident of fate, a unity exists due to the use of pink bricks and a symmetrical, if vague, balancing of successive low wings.