sun·​di·​al | \ ˈsən-ˌdī(-ə)l How to pronounce sundial (audio) \

Definition of sundial

: an instrument to show the time of day by the shadow of a gnomon on a usually horizontal plate or on a cylindrical surface

Examples of sundial in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web

The time for each image will then be confirmed, using digital sundials to calculate shadow length and direction. Muhammad Idrees Ahmad, The New York Review of Books, "Bellingcat and How Open Source Reinvented Investigative Journalism," 10 June 2019 Art deco details abound, including a sundial on the front of the house, door medallions, and a dramatic staircase in the foyer. Megan Barber, Curbed, "Art Deco estate designed by Charles Eames asks $1.9M," 26 June 2019 That might explain why the villa’s bronzes include an exuberantly leaping piglet and a sundial in the form of a ham. Peter Saenger, WSJ, "Preserved by a Fiery Disaster," 21 June 2019 In his Oxfordshire studio, Harber and his team create sculptures, water features and sundials out of metal. Washington Post, "RIGHT AT HOME: Outdoor decor that’s ‘out there’ and edgy," 19 June 2019 At this moment, the work depicts an aerial view of the power plant, concentric circles of tile-like mirrors with a tower at its center that, all together, resembles an ancient, slate-gray sundial of sorts. Deborah Vankin,, "LACMA debuts its 'Solar Reserve,' a digital sculpture addressing energy conservation," 12 July 2018 Up until the early 19th century sundials were the main instrument people used to tell time. Megan Arnett, Scientific American, "It's About Time... to Make a Sundial!," 15 Mar. 2018 The Loosens and the Prüms make wine from some of the most famous Mosel Riesling vineyards, including Wehlener Sonnenuhr, which faces the town of Wehlen and features a large 19th-century sundial. Lettie Teague, WSJ, "The Wine Destination Only the Pros Know," 27 June 2018 Through its intricate architecture, the library's Great Reading Room morphs into a sundial once the solstice hits. Weldon Johnson, azcentral, "Summer solstice 2018 is June 21. Here's why the day is a big deal," 19 June 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'sundial.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of sundial

1555, in the meaning defined above

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Last Updated

24 Jul 2019

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Time Traveler for sundial

The first known use of sundial was in 1555

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English Language Learners Definition of sundial

: a device that is used to show the time of day by the position of the sun and that consists of a plate with markings like a clock and an object with a straight edge that casts a shadow onto the plate


sun·​di·​al | \ ˈsən-ˌdī-əl How to pronounce sundial (audio) \

Kids Definition of sundial

: a device that shows the time of day by the position of the shadow cast onto a marked plate by an object with a straight edge

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Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with sundial

Spanish Central: Translation of sundial

Nglish: Translation of sundial for Spanish Speakers Encyclopedia article about sundial

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What made you want to look up sundial? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).


a period when something is suspended

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