Search records

Pulpit Hour Glass

Date made: mid 18th century

Description: Ancient Pulpit Hour-Glass of the Corlett Family of Orrisdale. Believed to be from Bishops Court in Bishop Wilson's time, circa 1750.

Pulpit hour glasses were used to time the length of a sermon.

The hour glass is made of two glass bulbs joined at centre, join is wrapped in cord (and probably sealed with wax) and filled with sand (sand flows between the two bulbs at a constant rate). The glass is held in a wooden/ dark oak frame made of two discs with 5 wooden spindles (4 spindles are held in place by dowels and one is screwed in place/ the spindles are not all identical and one has flat faces to it).

The first hourglasses were two separate bulbs with a cord wrapped at their union that was then coated in wax to hold the piece together and let sand flow in between. It was not until 1760 that both bulbs were blown together to keep moisture out of the bulbs and regulate the pressure within the bulb that varied the flow.

Measurements: overall: 18 x 10 cm

Materials: glass, metal, wood

Object name: time glass

Collection: Social History Collection

ID Number: 1954-5576


Optional, not displayed

Manx National Heritage (MNH) will always put you in control of the information we send you. Read our privacy policy