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History

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July 2022

1953

July 2022
1953

There are rich and interesting years for historians, and years in which few but noteworthy events happen. In the year I want to tell you about, few but important things happened.   Stalin dies, the war in Korea ends, biologists Watson and Crick discover the double helix structure of DNA. Elvis Presley records his first record, New Zealander Edmund Hilary and Sherpa Tenzing Nogary climb Everest. Well, does that seem little?   But in the world of watchmaking, you may ask? A lot happens.   It is precisely the ascent of the world’s highest mountain that offers interesting topics. Hilary and Norgay both climb with a watch on their wrists, which was also an important instrument for determining the duration of the oxygen cylinder, an error in the calculation could cost them their lives, as at the time it was believed that it was impossible to climb more than 8000 metres without one.

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May 2022

1585 (Part 2)

May 2022
1585 (Part 2)

In 1585, Tommaso Garzoni, a religious belonging to the order of the Lateran Canons, had one of his most important works published under the title: La piazza universale di tutte le professioni del mondo, which would be reprinted and translated for almost a century. A very fortunate work and an example then for many. It is a pity that our Tommaso (sometimes Tomaso) died in 1589 and did not enjoy the success. An encyclopaedic, endless work, it deals with all professions, trades, human activities. From princes and lords to clergymen, from jurisconsults to agozzini, agucchiaruoli, arcari, boii, curadestri, from duellists to cunning, heretics and, of course, inquisitors, from dream interpreters to logicians, magicians, backbiters, prostitutes, cops, spies, usurers. In short, think of any human activity and here you will find a description, up to 540 entries. Yes you read that right.

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May 2022

1585 (Part 1)

May 2022
1585 (Part 1)

I don’t know what you think of the watchmaking profession. There are those who admire it unconditionally and, on the contrary, those who consider it just another profession. The evolution of the figure of the watchmaker technician is long and fascinating and I reserve the right to do a special article on it. Today there is much more information and many people know that a good watchmaker is a person who has done specific studies, who has had to do a lot of ‘gavetta’ and, if he or she proves to have the necessary requisites, will finally be able to devote himself or herself to the objects we so admire. As in all fields, there are technicians, good technicians, great technicians and, fortunately for us, great talents. Those who solve, reinvent, create, in short, always raise the ‘bar’.

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April 2022

Religion

April 2022
Religion

Religions have accompanied man and his history practically since time immemorial. There is no known culture, large or small, that has not developed its own faith, its own thinking, its own feeling that there is something sacred beyond reality, beyond life. One or more “superior” Entities to look to, to ask, to make supplications to, to receive inspiration, illumination, revelations. It is therefore obvious that religion has traversed, and sometimes conditioned, the history of the measurement of time much more than one might think.

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March 2022

A Friend

March 2022
A Friend

Would you like to have as a friend a person who, having inherited from his father a considerable love of studies, becomes one of the greatest experts in astronomy, philosophy and medicine? Who is highly esteemed by the most talented scholars in Italy, Germany and Hungary? Who is appointed personal physician to Charles IV of Bohemia, who teaches medicine and astronomy in Padua, medicine in Florence and then again in Padua and who, despite these commitments, is also a great traveller, mainly to teach but also to treat powerful people and to be a negotiator on behalf of the municipality of Padua?

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March 2022

A.D.  1336

March 2022
A.D.  1336

It is always difficult to put oneself in other people’s shoes. If we don’t know the other person, it’s almost impossible. Imagine if the person whose shoes I would like to “step into” lived in the early 1300s. No, I haven’t gone mad, it’s just that as a great lover of the history of watchmaking, I’d love to know what people who were very different from me thought, how they lived, what they knew, and how they reacted to new things.

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