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The one that has been erected in the Campus Martius1 has been applied to a singular purpose by the late Emperor Augustus; that of marking the shadows projected by the sun, and so measuring the length of the days and nights. With this object, a stone pavement was laid, the extreme length of which corresponded exactly with the length of the shadow thrown by the obelisk at the sixth hour2 on the day of the winter solstice. After this period, the shadow would go on, day by day, gradually decreasing, and then again3 would as gradually increase, correspondingly with certain lines of brass that were inserted in the stone; a device well deserving to be known, and due to the ingenuity of Facundus Novus, the mathematician. Upon the apex of the obelisk he placed a gilded ball in order that the shadow of the summit might be con- densed and agglomerated, and so prevent the shadow of the apex itself from running to a fine point of enormous extent; the plan being first suggested to him, it is said, by the shadow that is projected by the human head. For nearly the last thirty years, however, the observations derived from this dial have been found not to agree: whether it is that the sun itself has changed its course in consequence of some derangement of the heavenly system; or whether that the whole earth has been in some degree displaced from its centre, a thing that, I have heard say, has been. remarked in other places as well; or whether that some earthquake, confined to this city only, has wrenched the dial from its original position; or whether it is that in consequence of the inundations of the Tiber, the foundations of the mass have subsided, in spite of the general assertion that they are sunk as deep into the earth as the obelisk erected upon them is high.

(11.) The third4 obelisk5 at Rome is in the Vaticanian6 Circus, which was constructed by the Emperors Caius7 and Nero; this being the only one of them all that has been broken in the carriage. Nuncoreus,8 the son of Sesoses, made it: and there remains9 another by him, one hundred cubits in height, which, by order of an oracle, he consecrated to the Sun, after having lost his sight and recovered it.

1 After being long buried in ruins, it was disinterred, but not re-erected, by Pope Benedict XIV. When thus brought to light, it was found to be broken asunder. On it there was an inscription stating that the Emperor Augustus had "presented it to the Sun"— "Soli donum dedit."

2 Twelve o' clock in the day.

3 After the summer solstice.

4 The one that is mentioned above as having been removed from Alexandria by Caligula.

5 This obelisk was transferred by Pope Sextus V. from the Circus Vaticanus to the place of the Cathedral of St. Peter.

6 So called because it was laid out on some gardens which had belonged to one Vaticanus.

7 Caligula.

8 There are nine or ten readings of this name. Bunsen suggests "Menophtheus," the Egyptian king Meneph-Pthah.

9 In Egypt, probably.

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