The Wolsenburg Clock chronicles the development of a complex machine, and the risks and devotion that went into its construction throughout the Medieval, Renaissance, Enlightenment, and Modern periods of history.
In a small Austrian city near the Italian border, a Canadian academic wants desperately to save a 600-year-old artifact while Second World War bombs terrorize the area. The artifact, a fourteenth century astronomical clock, has been constructed and restored by a series of gifted individuals dedicated to producing the finest timepiece of their age. From its creation in the newly consecrated cathedral in Wolsenburg, to its near-demise in a unruly fire, to its final incarnation as the most impressive clock ever built, the academic uncovers the secrets and infatuations of the clock’s remarkable engineers. This magical device — that kept time, charted celestial motion, and entertained parishioners with a show of automated figures — was not built without personal costs.
Creating an engaging fiction about an extraordinary contraption and its brilliant mechanics, Jay Ruzesky also sketches the battle between the Church and the scientists of the time who both desired to be at the forefront of social conscience, as time became understood and measured in new ways in Western Europe.
- Long-listed for the 2010 ReLit Award for Fiction
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