Tick tock goes the clock. Tick tock here at the Astronomical Clock (Orloy) in Prague, and then tick tock there at the Anker Clock in Vienna. Below are two of the most famous clocks of the world together. Or against each other? Personally, I don’t have a favourite. The Astronomical Clock is a stunning mammoth of a timepiece, whilst the Anker Clock has Joseph Haydn and Maria Theresia waltzing ’round… From the mechanism that keeps the hands moving to the face we are looking up and up at – I’m just fascinated by the workmanship that went into creating these clocks.
Let’s just wind the clock back to the beginning. The Orloy dates back to the early fifteenth century, which makes it roughly five hundred years the senior of the Art Nouveau Anker Clock. That is some age difference! They both look like elders, but I would have guessed them to be around the same oldness. Many myths and urban legends surround the Astronomical Clock, not too surprisingly (in a city of alchemists and magic?), my favourite being the one with the nodding skeleton. I will have to go back to Prague to see it move, but while in Vienna I managed to catch the daily figure parade of the Anker Clock. Getting to meet all of its ‘residents’ at once was pretty swell.
Tick tock here comes your moment. I have only got to spend a short amount of time admiring these clocks, but what a well spent few minutes those were!
Tick tock, ready or not, your time is up. The Anker Clock is pretty straightforward, you just have to arrive in time and you will get to enjoy and understand it instantly. The Astronomical Clock is a little bit more manifold. Where I only see the Sun and the Moon and the figures mounted around the dial, if one has the time and knowledge one might be able to decipher the secrets of the universe… Just might.