The current exhibition at the Embassy of Japan is a glimpse into the world of the late Edo period (1603 – 1868) and a time when the market for new technologies was flourishing and a variety of technological instruments for use in everyday life were in great demand.
The centrepiece of the exhibition is a full-size replica of the Ten Thousand-Year Clock or Man-nen dokei, a masterpiece of Japanese clock-making, with the original having been made in 1851. The clock has six faces, each showing a different way of measuring time, all of which are controlled by a central mechanism. It includes a so-called Japanese clock, wa-dokei, which expresses time in units of differing lengths as the seasons change throughout the year. If you come to the Embassy, you could be lucky enough to hear one of the twelve daily chimes.