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Zimmertoren clock, Lier - A view from our expert author


Built by Louis Zimmer, this clock remains one of the most intricate and advanced ever produced.

Zimmertoren, Lier, Flanders, by Emma Thomson

It’s fair to say that Lier local Louis Zimmer, the self-taught clockmaker after whom this tower is named, was a clever chap. To this day, his clocks remains some of the most intricate and advanced ever produced.  First you’ll visit the 4m-high Wonder Clock which has no fewer than 92 astronomical dials. When it was dismantled and shipped to the Rockefeller Center in New York for the 1939 World Fair, it took them two years to put it back together. The clock stayed in America during World War II and was returned to Lier in 1954.  Pick out the third clock from the bottom in the middle row: it takes 25,800 years to make one full rotation which means it’s the slowest-moving mechanism in the world. The room also contains a replica of Zimmer’s workshop and Clock of the Landings of the Moon, the last clock he ever made (at the age of 80) and which is now set at the hour of his death.

(Photo: © Emma Thomson)

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