MARK WILLIAMSON / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY MARK WILLIAMSON / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY
One of several historical Chinese astronomical instruments on the roof of the Beijing Ancient Observatory in Beijing, China, an astronomical observatory that dates from the 1400s. The celestial globe (1673) was designed to determine the time and azimuth of the rising and setting of celestial objects and, more generally, the azimuth and altitude (elevation angle) of those objects at other times.
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