See our current inventory of Antique sextants and ocatants here
OUTSTANDING 19TH Cent HISTORIC SEXTANT WITH EXCELLENT PEDIGREE
Sold Originally by Fredrick W. Lincoln to Boston whaling
Presented is an ebony frame, ivory arc, antique
sextant made by the well known maker Spencer, Browning & Co. of London, Ca 1840. It is in outstanding original condition
and has the seller's label of Fredrick W. Lincoln which is like new. Lincoln was the grandson of Paul Revere, and also Boston's
mayor during the Civil War. Accompanying the label, in old style handwriting is a note saying that it was the property
of a Boston whaling captain.
The arc measures from - 5 to plus 105 degrees. The ivory plate on a
cross bar between the two limbs is engraved "Spencer Browning & Co. London", Additionally, in the center of the ivory
degree's scale between 50 and 55 degrees is inscribed in script "SBR" identifying the ivory was engraved by Spencer,
Browning & Rust, of London.
SBR was in business in London from 1784 to 1840, specializing in instruments for navigational use. It's business continued
under the name of Spencer, Browning & Co. which ceased business in 1870.
This beautifully made instrument has a ribbed brass index arm measuring
over 12 inches long. The horizon mirror is on an adjustable turntable and can be rotated by two knobs one of
which locks the mirror's position. Note the early form thumb screw, ivory vernier scale, reading from right to left from 0
to 20 arc minutes, two hole peep sight with "flap", and three sun shades all of which date the instrument. There is no provision
for a handle on this instrument which marks it as a transitional piece between an octant and a sextant.
Some time after 1780, the addition of a tangent screw, as fitted
to this instrument, allowed for fine adjustment and represents one of the two major changes in the basic operation of
the octants and sextants for the next 150 years! The second was the fiting of telescopes. As was the practice with octant's
of larger size, this sextant was not fitted with a handle which indicates it is one of the earliest of that type made by Spencer
Browning making it a noteworthy instrument by this maker.
Period Notation of Provenance
INSTRUMENT CONDITION: The sextant appears in its last
used condition having been maintained by someone who lavished great care on his instrument. The mirrors are in much
better condition than might be expected though they do show their age. All the ivory is in perfect condition, and the
engraving is sharp and distinct. The index arm clamp, and shade glasses are complete and in good working order. The
ebony frame shows as near new. The instrument has its original machinery, and a two hole peep sight. Everything is original
and in good working order.
THE CASE: The "keystone" solid Mahogany case
is in excellent condition, very clean inside, and has some age cracks and shrinking on its bottom panel. There
is a 3/8" chip missing in its lower right. There is a lock, and key. A label on the inside reads Fredrick
W. Lincoln, Nautical Instruments, No. 126 Commercial St, Boston. Orders thankfully received and professionally executed.
Fredrick W. Lincoln Retailer's Label
All in all,
a highly desirable and worthwhile example from one of the better known English instrument makers.
Length of frame 12"
Width of frame at arc 9 5/16"
Index mirror 50 x 30 mm
Horizon mirror 24 x 20 mm
Weight 2 Lbs 2 oz
CREDENTIALS: We are one of the few people selling
Old World navigation instruments that know anything about them. For purposes of judging whether my opinion counts, I was the
editor of the chapter on sextants of the 1977 Edition of "Bowditch", The American Practical Navigator, NAVPUB 9; a member
of the U.S. Naval Academy Navigation Symposium Board, 1975-1978; the author of a book on marine sextants, Cornell Maritime
Press,1975, and the founding president of Nautech Maritime Corporation which partnered with Tamaya of Japan in the introduction
of the MS 733 Spica, the MS 833, Jupiter, MS 933 Venus sextants and the famous NC-2 navigation computer, in the
U.S. market. I am also a retired Master Mariner, and held a U.S. Navy "D" Qualification as a Senior Skipper - Oceans.
Rarely do you find an instrument that
is that is 166 years old in this original condition with a perfect historic label and period notation. A superior
addition to any collection.
OUR UNCONDITIONAL GUARANTEE: If not completely
satisfied with your purchase it may be returned, if without damage, within three days of receipt in its original condition
and packaging. Returns must be insured for their full value. All that is required is a prior email authorization by us for
the return. Unfortunately, no refund can be made for the cost of shipping, packaging and handling unless we are at fault.
INTERNATIONAL BUYERS WELCOME, but contact us first. We have customers in Australia,
Austria, Belgium, Bermuda, Canada, Chile, China, Denmark, England, France, Germany, Holland, Hong Kong, Ireland, Israel, Italy,
Japan, Kuwait, Martinique, Mexico, New Zealand, Norway, Nova Scotia, Saudi Arabia, Scotland, Singapore, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland,
Thailand, USVI and the Eastern Caribbean.
ACCEPTED FORMS OF PAYMENT are Bank wire transfer, cashier's
check, money order, or personal check in which case the item will be held until cleared. No credit cards or PayPal accepted
on big ticket items.
this very special article of maritime history Now! What a great find for that special person who can appreciate only the finest
and most rare. Or donate it to a museum where it belongs.
Copyright 2006 by Land And Sea Collection, All Rights
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