Some water clock designs were developed independently and some knowledge was transferred through the spread of trade. Pre-modern societies do not have the same precise timekeeping requirements that exist in modern industrial societies, where every hour of work or rest is monitored, and work may start or finish at any time regardless of external conditions. Instead, water clocks in ancient societies were used mainly for astrological reasons. These early water clocks were calibrated with a sundial. While never reaching the level of accuracy of a modern timepiece, the water clock was the most accurate and commonly used timekeeping device for millennia, until it was replaced by the more accurate pendulum clock in 17th-century Europe.
You’re going to have to admit it to yourself at one point or another—using your smartphone as a digital alarm clock just doesn’t cut it. You sleep through it, you rely on it as a bedroom clock when it’s just not cutting it. Whether you need alarm clocks for heavy sleepers, a projection alarm clock, or a programmable alarm clock that is up to you. You just need to make sure that it works. Fortunately, you know your favorite Gear Hungry experts have whipped up the ten best alarm clock models on the internet.

The oldest surviving clock in England is that at Salisbury Cathedral, which dates from 1386. A clock erected at Rouen, France, in 1389 is still extant, and one built for Wells Cathedral in England is preserved in the Science Museum in London. The Salisbury clock strikes the hours, and those of Rouen and Wells also have mechanisms for chiming at the quarter hour. These clocks are large, iron-framed structures driven by falling weights attached to a cord wrapped around a drum and regulated by a mechanism known as a verge (or crown wheel) escapement. Their errors probably were as large as a half hour per day. The first domestic clocks were smaller wall-mounted versions of these large public clocks. They appeared late in the 14th century, and few examples have survived; most of them, extremely austere in design, had no cases or means of protection from dust.
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It is undesirable to give someone a clock or (depending on the region) other timepiece as a gift. Traditional superstitions regard this as counting the seconds to the recipient's death. Another common interpretation of this is that the phrase "to give a clock" (simplified Chinese: 送钟; traditional Chinese: 送鐘) in Chinese is pronounced "sòng zhōng" in Mandarin, which is a homophone of a phrase for "terminating" or "attending a funeral" (both can be written as 送終 (traditional) or 送终 (simplified)). Cantonese people consider such a gift as a curse.[79]
The Philips Wake-Up Light offers a choice of five pleasant nature sounds — or for the more traditionally minded, FM radio — for your morning wake-up call, but the real star of the show is the sunlight simulation. Twenty to forty minutes before your programmed wake-up time (you set both times), the clock will slowly begin to simulate the sunrise, complete with the softest dawn reds and oranges gently brightening into sunny, yellow light.

Defined by its vintage silhouette, this round tabletop clock features two bells up above connected by a slender bridge. Its bold black numbers and classic pierced hands help you keep track of your day, while its alarm ensures you'll wake up on time to start your morning right. This metal design is offered in several bright shades with chipped accents that enhance its antique look. It requires one AA battery (not included).
In mechanical clocks, the low Q of the balance wheel or pendulum oscillator made them very sensitive to the disturbing effect of the impulses of the escapement, so the escapement had a great effect on the accuracy of the clock, and many escapement designs were tried. The higher Q of resonators in electronic clocks makes them relatively insensitive to the disturbing effects of the drive power, so the driving oscillator circuit is a much less critical component.[2]
In a clock driven by a weight or a spring, the power is first transmitted by the main, or great, wheel. This engages with a pinion (a gear with a small number of teeth designed to mesh with a larger wheel), whose arbor (a turning rod to which gears are attached) is attached to the second wheel that, in its turn, engages with the next pinion, and so on, down through the train to the escapement. The gear ratios are such that one arbor, usually the second or third, rotates once an hour and can be used to carry the minute hand. A simple 12-to-1 gearing, known as the motion work, gives the necessary step-down ratio to drive the hour hand. The spring or weight is fitted with a mechanism so it can be rewound when necessary, and the arbor carrying the minute hand is provided with a simple slipping clutch that allows the hands to be set to the correct time.
Pairing a simple design with a contrasting black-and-silver palette, this eye-catching 12" wall clock instantly elevates your favorite aesthetic. Its round silhouette blends effortlessly into both casual or formal spaces, while its clean profile adds sophistication to your decor. Lean into this wall clock's versatility by adding it to a transitional living room arrangement alongside a mid-century-inspired sofa and gently-tufted barrel chairs for a cohesive seating space. Anchor the ensemble...
A clock that looks good and runs smoothly instantly adds charm and functionality to your living space. For a fresh take on the traditional wall clock, consider this eye-catching design. Introducing Ribbonwood by Umbra Add a modern, minimalist twist to telling time. With Ribbonwood, you get a stylish piece of wall décor and a functional wall clock all-in-one. Made with natural beech wood that’s been shaped to resemble overlapping ribbons, this unique clock features contrasting hands that...
The Howard Miller Postema Oversized 49" Wall Clock is a unique piece that will remind you of oversized clocks. This round-shaped clock is a piece of style with the traditional accents. The clock has an espresso finish and round shape. You can mount this clock in any room at your home. This clock can also be placed in big halls or entryways because of its size and functionality. The clock has a distressed finish that complements the espresso varnish. This antique wall clock is made from wrought...
Seriously, projection clocks are awesome. Apart from the obvious design perks, you get high-speed USB charging for your phone or tablet overnight. (By the way, we recommend setting multiple alarms no matter what clock you buy, you heavy sleeper, you.) The large LED display of Electrohome EAAC475 is sure to wake you up if the reflection of the projection and the sound doesn’t. You can set this up without worry—power failure doesn’t stand a chance. The lithium-ion battery that’s included in this model acts as a backup power reserve, so you’re never caught with your guard down.
For light sleepers, audio alarms can be rather jarring. Fortunately, the Philips Morning Wake-Up Light uses a warm, gentle glow and natural sound effects rather than incessant beeping to get you out of bed. The alarm clock also features a colored sunrise simulation and 20 brightness settings for optimal customization. The light slowly increases in brightness between 20 and 40 minutes prior to your desired alarm time. The clock helps you drift to sleep, too. Instead of you simply turning out the lights and settling into bed, the light-responsive dimming feature gently guides you to sleep with audio accompaniment. This type of alarm is definitely not for everyone, but it is suitable for those who prefer to wake up gradually. For more details, read our full Philips Wake-Up Light review.

The Howard Miller Brohman 625-618 Large Wall Clock has a brushed, warm brown finish and metallic undertones. At 34" in diameter with a 22" aged dial this clock will fit just about any decor. With large Roman numerals and black hands this clock will be a favorite for years to come. Highly accurate quartz movement requires one AA battery (Not Included).


These mechanical clocks were intended for two main purposes: for signalling and notification (e.g. the timing of services and public events), and for modeling the solar system. The former purpose is administrative, the latter arises naturally given the scholarly interests in astronomy, science, astrology, and how these subjects integrated with the religious philosophy of the time. The astrolabe was used both by astronomers and astrologers, and it was natural to apply a clockwork drive to the rotating plate to produce a working model of the solar system.
late 14c., clokke, originally "clock with bells," probably from Middle Dutch clocke (Dutch klok) "a clock," from Old North French cloque (Old French cloke, Modern French cloche), from Medieval Latin (7c.) clocca "bell," probably from Celtic (cf. Old Irish clocc, Welsh cloch, Manx clagg "a bell") and spread by Irish missionaries (unless the Celtic words are from Latin); ultimately of imitative origin.
This metal wire case wall clock is finished in antique black with antique gold highlights. The pendulum bob, with matching finish, is an open circle, suspended on a metal pendulum. A black bezel surrounds the convex acrylic crystal. The dial features an antique Antique Red background with gold Arabic numerals and Antique gold spade hands. Quartz, non-chiming battery operated movement. One Year Warranty.
Though no longer our first pick of timepiece thanks to the smart phone, this old-fashioned clock still scores points for form. Measuring 6.25'' H x 2.5'' W x 5'' D, this compact clock’s face is encased in a metal case with a brushed nickel finish and convex glass lens, while its faded dial stays in step with vintage styling. This item is battery operated, but does not emit a loud ticking noise, so you can snooze to your heart's content.

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This 24" large metal Large Wall Clock is finished in a dark rubbed bronze with aged bronze accents at the 3, 6, 9 and 12 positions. The aged dial features a subtle center pattern, aged black Roman numerals, black spade hour and minute hands and a convex glass crystal. A twisted metal ring frames the dial. Quartz, battery operated movement. One year warranty and Free Shipping.
Early clock dials did not indicate minutes and seconds. A clock with a dial indicating minutes was illustrated in a 1475 manuscript by Paulus Almanus,[31] and some 15th-century clocks in Germany indicated minutes and seconds.[32] An early record of a seconds hand on a clock dates back to about 1560 on a clock now in the Fremersdorf collection.[33]:417–418[34]
A water-powered cogwheel clock was created in China in AD 725 by Yi Xing and Liang Lingzan. This is not considered an escapement mechanism clock as it was unidirectional, the Song dynasty polymath and genius Su Song (1020–1101) incorporated it into his monumental innovation of the astronomical clock-tower of Kaifeng in 1088.[19][page needed] His astronomical clock and rotating armillary sphere still relied on the use of either flowing water during the spring, summer, autumn seasons and liquid mercury during the freezing temperature of winter (i.e. hydraulics). A mercury clock, described in the Libros del saber, a Spanish work from 1277 consisting of translations and paraphrases of Arabic works, is sometimes quoted as evidence for Muslim knowledge of a mechanical clock. A mercury-powered cogwheel clock was created by Ibn Khalaf al-Muradi[20][21]
In 1815, Francis Ronalds published the first electric clock powered by dry pile batteries.[48] Alexander Bain, Scottish clockmaker, patented the electric clock in 1840. The electric clock's mainspring is wound either with an electric motor or with an electromagnet and armature. In 1841, he first patented the electromagnetic pendulum. By the end of the nineteenth century, the advent of the dry cell battery made it feasible to use electric power in clocks. Spring or weight driven clocks that use electricity, either alternating current (AC) or direct current (DC), to rewind the spring or raise the weight of a mechanical clock would be classified as an electromechanical clock. This classification would also apply to clocks that employ an electrical impulse to propel the pendulum. In electromechanical clocks the electricity serves no time keeping function. These types of clocks were made as individual timepieces but more commonly used in synchronized time installations in schools, businesses, factories, railroads and government facilities as a master clock and slave clocks.
Fellow tea-lovers, all of our dreams are coming true! We can finally wake up to the smells and sounds of freshly brewed tea with the Teasmade Alarm Clock. Instead of making screeching noises to get you out of bed, it'll first brew you a fresh cup of tea at the time of your choice, and then sound an alarm after boiling is complete. After dark, the face of the clock illuminates with an adjustable blue night light that's dim enough to not disturb light-sensitive sleepers.
There’s nothing like seeing the time blasted on the wall in sharp red LED display. It gives you the perfect sense of, “Oh crap, I’m going to be late.” Projection alarm clocks are just plain awesome, and it’s especially true in this model. This isn’t just another electric alarm clock—you get advanced SelfSet technology thrown into this bad boy that’s going to correct the time and date for you, so the Daylight Savings Time ghost of Benjamin Franklin doesn’t haunt you.
You don't have to use all of those features, however. You can set them in a variety of combinations, or even turn all of them off except for the flashing red lights. You can also set the length of the alarm's ring from one to 60 minutes, and choose a snooze option from one to 30 minutes. Plus, the clock has dual alarms, so both you and your partner can have different wake-up times.

Spring-driven clocks appeared during the 15th century,[25][26][27] although they are often erroneously credited to Nuremberg watchmaker Peter Henlein (or Henle, or Hele) around 1511.[28][29][30] The earliest existing spring driven clock is the chamber clock given to Phillip the Good, Duke of Burgundy, around 1430, now in the Germanisches Nationalmuseum.[4] Spring power presented clockmakers with a new problem: how to keep the clock movement running at a constant rate as the spring ran down. This resulted in the invention of the stackfreed and the fusee in the 15th century, and many other innovations, down to the invention of the modern going barrel in 1760.
The Howard Miller Braxton 625-628 Wall Clock is finished in Black Coffee on select hardwoods and veneers. The white dial features black Arabic numerals and minute track. The polished silver-tone bezel matches the brushed silver finished pendulum bob. The wooden pendulum stick matches the color of the case. The single chime quartz movement plays the Westminster chime on the hour and gives an hour count. One Year Warranty and Free Shipping.
Health.com is part of the Meredith Health Group. All rights reserved. The material in this site is intended to be of general informational use and is not intended to constitute medical advice, probable diagnosis, or recommended treatments. All products and services featured are selected by our editors. Health.com may receive compensation for some links to products and services on this website. Offers may be subject to change without notice. See the Terms of Service and Privacy Policy (Your California Rights)for more information. Ad Choices | EU Data Subject Requests
Though no longer our first pick of timepiece thanks to the smart phone, this old-fashioned clock still scores points for form. Measuring 6.25'' H x 2.5'' W x 5'' D, this compact clock’s face is encased in a metal case with a brushed nickel finish and convex glass lens, while its faded dial stays in step with vintage styling. This item is battery operated, but does not emit a loud ticking noise, so you can snooze to your heart's content.
Emerson alarm clock radio features relaxing sounds that help you unwind and fall asleep faster. Perfect for bedrooms, baby nurseries, spas, salons, apartments, offices and anywhere where unwanted disturbing or intrusive noise is a problem. The noise sound machine can help block out distractions and promote relaxation prior to sleep to provide you with a more peaceful, restful night sleep. Sounds include ocean side, rain, rain forest, summer night, tide and noise. With features such as a...

Its display can be turned off or dimmed, so the large, easy-to-read numbers won’t blind you all night long. If you like to wake up to the radio or to an alarm that gets louder over time, you won’t find those features here (though there is a version with a Bluetooth speaker but still no radio). Still, it does its job well, and there’s a reason this clock is found in lots of hotel rooms.
About 1450, clockmakers working probably in southern Germany or northern Italy began to make small clocks driven by a spring. These were the first portable timepieces, representing an important landmark in horology. The time-telling dials of these clocks usually had an hour hand only (minute hands did not generally appear until the 1650s) and were exposed to the air; there was normally no form of cover such as a glass until the 17th century, though the mechanism was enclosed, and the cases were made of brass.
Any expansion or contraction of the rod caused by changes of temperature will affect the timekeeping of a pendulum; e.g., a pendulum clock with a steel rod will lose one second a day for a rise in temperature of approximately 4 °F (2.2 °C). For accurate timekeeping, the length of the pendulum must be kept as nearly constant as possible. This may be done in several ways, some of which use the differing coefficients of expansion (the amount of expansion per degree change in temperature) of different metals to obtain a cancelling-out effect. In one popular compensation method, the bob consists of a glass or metal jar containing a suitable amount of mercury. The gridiron pendulum employs rods of different metal, usually brass and steel, while in the zinc-iron tube the pendulum rod is made of concentric tubes of zinc and iron. An improved method, however, is to make the pendulum rod from a special alloy called Invar. This material has such a small coefficient of expansion that small changes of temperature have a negligible effect and can easily be compensated for if required.
Go to bed with positive thoughts. Tell yourself, “I want to get up early because…” and then, actually do it. Sleep studies happen all the time, and they tell us what exterior activities are affecting our dreams, our nightmares, etc., and talking to yourself as you drift off to bed has been proven to work. If you’re looking forward to something in the morning, tell yourself about it, and your body will hold onto that through the night.
Simple clocks intended mainly for notification were installed in towers, and did not always require faces or hands. They would have announced the canonical hours or intervals between set times of prayer. Canonical hours varied in length as the times of sunrise and sunset shifted. The more sophisticated astronomical clocks would have had moving dials or hands, and would have shown the time in various time systems, including Italian hours, canonical hours, and time as measured by astronomers at the time. Both styles of clock started acquiring extravagant features such as automata.
In addition to radio, recent clock radios have other music sources such as iPod, iPhone, and/or audio CD. When the alarm is triggered, it can play a set radio station or the music from a selected music source to awaken the sleeper. These models usually come with a dock for iPod/iPhone that also charges the device while it is docked. They can play FM/AM radio, iPod/iPhone or CD like a typical music player as well (without being triggered by the alarm function). A few popular models offer "nature sounds" like rain, forest, fire, sea, waterfall etc., in place of the buzzer.
Some clocks, called 'flip clocks', have digital displays that work mechanically. The digits are painted on sheets of material which are mounted like the pages of a book. Once a minute, a page is turned over to reveal the next digit. These displays are usually easier to read in brightly lit conditions than LCDs or LEDs. Also, they do not go back to 12:00 after a power interruption. Flip clocks generally do not have electronic mechanisms. Usually, they are driven by AC-synchronous motors.

You know that feeling you get when you draw the blinds, and you didn’t expect it to be so sunny? That’s what this alarm clock does for you, except it wakes you up instead. Philips incorporated yellow-and-white light into this sunrise simulation programmable alarm clock, and this is the only alarm clock/lamp that’s certified to help you sleep better, and awake more refreshed than you ever thought possible. From America’s favorite retailer of small and budget-friendly gadgets, Philips does it again.

Go to bed with positive thoughts. Tell yourself, “I want to get up early because…” and then, actually do it. Sleep studies happen all the time, and they tell us what exterior activities are affecting our dreams, our nightmares, etc., and talking to yourself as you drift off to bed has been proven to work. If you’re looking forward to something in the morning, tell yourself about it, and your body will hold onto that through the night.
Certainly not just for telling time, wall clocks are perfect for adding artful appeal to your kitchen wall or acting as a focal point above the living room mantel. Take this one for example: crafted from metal, its frame features an openwork design and a black finish for a look that fits right into traditional abodes and modern farmhouses alike. Measures about 30'' in diameter. Requires one AA battery to operate.
In the modern day and age, clocks are everywhere, from your phone to your computer or even on your wrist as a fashion item. A modern clock can be used for more than just telling time, a wall clock makes for a great design piece for your home. There are contrasting types of clocks ranging from analog to oversized, and they come in an assortment of shapes and material as well. Clocks are interesting wall decorations because they are constantly looked at to figure out the time, which makes finding a wall clock that fits your style that much more important.
Showcasing the time, date, and weather, this clock is an essential for any desk. No need to lift your arm and look at your watch or light up your phone screen, this 0.3'' H x 3.7'' W x 1.5'' D design is an easy way to get the info you need. A vibrant blue backlight keeps it illuminated (requiring the power of a AA battery), while a plastic frame allows it to stand upright.
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