Box Sextant

Box Sextant

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Usage conditions apply
A box (or pocket) sextant works like a traditional sextant, but here the mechanism is enclosed in a brass box of about 3 inches diameter. William Jones, a leading instrument maker in London, introduced the form in 1797.
This example has a silvered scale that is graduated every 30 minutes from -5° to +145° and read by vernier to single minutes of arc. The inscription reads "H. HUGHES & SON, LTD. LONDON No 510 1918." The inscription on the leather case reads "T. J. WEEKS & SONS 1916."
Ref: William Jones, "Description of a New Pocket Box Sextant," in George Adams, Geometrical and Graphical Essays, 2nd ed. by William Jones, (London, 1797), pp. 283-285.
Currently not on view
Object Name
box sextant
date made
early 20th century
after 1903
place made
United Kingdom: England, London
overall: 3 in; 7.62 cm
overall: 3 5/8 in x 3 1/4 in x 2 1/4 in; 9.2075 cm x 8.255 cm x 5.715 cm
ID Number
catalog number
accession number
Credit Line
Howard Beall
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Medicine and Science: Physical Sciences
Measuring & Mapping
Data Source
National Museum of American History
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