my Marche
Art and Culture

There is a similar example in the Argolis and more precisely in Prosymna, both the globe found in the basement of the ancient Praetorian Palace, in the center of Matelica, and the one in the Peloponnese could come from the Aphrodisias quarry, near Ephesus, in Turkey. And it already seems really strange: what is a stone from Ephesus doing in Matelica? This strange round object with even stranger regular holes “framing” it, and those perfect circles and semicircles placed on its top?
A mysterious object which, when exposed to a light source, for example sunlight, shines as if by magic, a ball with a diameter of 29,6 cm (which seems to correspond to the "attic foot", or ποῦς, a unit measuring Ancient Greece) and weighing around 35 kg.

What was it, then? It was a sundial and as such linked to the latitude of the place where it was used. Whoever found it, and we must mention Mr. Danilo Baldini, a local exponent of the Archeoclub who really fought like a lion to "bring to light" this object whose importance many initially did not understand, proved it by exposing it to sunlight and noted its effects: The globe was created to function at the latitude of Matelica, which is around 43°, so if it had been transported from another point on earth, from Rome or Greece, it would have provided completely wrong data. A sundial, however, that not only counts the hours, but the days, months, seasons and signs of the Zodiac.

We know that the ancient Greeks, and in particular the Pythagoreans, studied the stars and the cosmos, mathematics and geometry and this clock was built in Matelica by those who had the technology and knew how to engrave those circles and its size.
In Matelica?
At this point (also read the nice interview with Danilo Baldini on
we can think of the origin of the name of the town which seems to have a connection with the word mathesis, which in Greek means study, teaching. Perhaps there was a school or a temple located in Matelica?
Perhaps, given that the Greeks - Dorians from Syracuse - had landed and settled in Ancona and Numana, some of them had penetrated into the interior?
There are many questions and all suggestive.
At this point, you just want to open a good astronomy book and start studying the sky.


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