The Capital Ottawa has the second oldest time piece in North America and the first one ever built in the City in 1833. It still works perfectly but few people notice. It will be 165 years old on 29 March.
North America’s second oldest sundial and Ottawa’s first public timepiece sits largely unnoticed on a corner of Sussex Avenue.
This Sunday March 20th the Northern Hemisphere enters The Vernal (Spring) Equinox, an astronomical event in which the plane of the Earth’s equator passes through the centre of the Sun, which occurs twice a year, once in March and again in September. During this event, both day and night are of equal duration across the globe. Ancient cultures like the Mayans would celebrate the occasion by performing rights of fertility. The Norse would worship Eostre, the Norse goddess of fertility and new beginnings, symbolized by eggs and rabbits, traditional symbols of modern day Easter. In addition to these sun worshippers, Ottawa has its own ancient device that harnesses the sun…an old sundial.
At the corner of Bruyère and Sussex in downtown Ottawa there is an unassuming marking on a building that was…
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