To aid a description in my fantasy novella-in-progress, I wanted a good image of a volvelle or "wheel chart" and had the fun of searching for one on the 'net. How about this example?!? Of course, in the real book, the device lies as flat as so many layers can, but bravo to the digitizers at the Berlin State Library for creating such a delicious, virtual, pop-up version. For links to additional pictures and resources, read on.
At the Digital World Library, you can view and even download the entire Astrolabium.
If volvelles are new to you, here are additional useful on-line resources for understanding them:
- Decoding the Medieval Volvelle from the Getty includes a gif to show the motion.
- The post on Volvelles from the Folger Shakespeare Library has particularly good photos of black-and-white manuscript pages
- In addition to medieval examples, Written in the Stars from the British Library has a photograph of a conservator at work on one.
- Finally, a post with much longer text appears at Volvelles from the Architectures of the Book.