Swedish castle museum to recover missing rare astronomical astrolabe made in 1590

Published August 20, 2013

| Associated Press

A rare 16th-century scientific artifact used in astronomical measurements that has been missing from a Swedish museum for a decade has been recovered and will be returned this week, the London-based Art Loss Register says.

The 1590 brass-and-silver astrolabe, worth around half a million euros ($750,000), turned up when an Italian collector discovered the piece was listed as missing and came forward to return it, Register Director Chris Marinello said.

Bengt Kylsberg of Skokloster Castle, north of Stockholm, said Tuesday he is glad to get the piece back and will put it on public display immediately.

German scholar Petra Schmidl of Bonn University, who studies astrolabes, describes them as a "two-dimensional model of the three-dimensional world." Known since ancient times, fewer than 2,000 astrolabes survive.

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