Stock Number: 9287


For sale: Antique,18th century double sided brass rule with multiple, nonlinear scales, designed for gunnery.


15-5/8" (40 cm)


18th century

Country of manufacture


Categories: Scientific, Calculating, Scales Weights & Measures, Surveying Instruments & Mining


RARE DUTCH GUNNERY RULE, 18th century, the two-sided rule made of brass   15-5/8” (40 cm) overall, pierced with a hanging hole.  Each of the four long edges is hand divided with a scale, viz., three very non linear ones, YZER (iron), divided from 0 to 125, STEEN (stone) 0 to 100, and LOOT (undoubtedly lead, now written “lood”) 0 to 125, plus one linear one R. DUYMEN (likely Rotterdam inches as duymen, or duimen, meaning thumbs, like the French pouces, and the length of twelve inches here measuring 312.5 mm, which is almost exactly the old Rotterdam foot), the inches subdivided progressively into a number of equal parts each to that inch’s numeral (thus for example the inch between 10 and 11 is divided into eleven equal parts).  The first unit on each of the three very nonlinear gunnery scales is subdivided, again very nonlinearly, from 0 to 32.  The scales relate the weights of cannonballs of various materials to their diameters, and thus to the cannonbore and the requisite charge.  Condition is fine noting a few spots and nicks.  

        We have had other gunnery rules: English,  German or Austrian, and Italian.  All are rare but Dutch ones particularly so.  A fine example.   $3500.


Ask the Dealer

Item enquiry

To enquire about this item, complete the form bellow to send a message to the Dealer

Enter Email
Confirm Email

Dealer information


David and Yola Coffeen both have enjoyed academic careers, as planetary astronomer and as linguist/educator. But since 1982 (yes, 1982!) they have been full-time dealers in early scientific and medical instruments, under the name Tesseract. Selling primarily by catalogue (over 100 issued so far) they also have a web presence at www.etesseract.com, and can be contacted at [email protected].

Shipping information
Payment methods
Terms & conditions