Isaac Watts - Putney Millennium Sundial - Upper Richmond Road, London, UK
Posted by: Groundspeak Premium Member Master Mariner
N 51° 27.649 W 000° 13.017
30U E 693327 N 5704745
Quick Description: The quotation is placed next to a millennium sundial that is attached to the south west face of Zeeta House on Upper Richmond Road and is at the junction with Putney High Street. The quotation is attributed to Isaac Watts.
Location: London, United Kingdom
Date Posted: 3/13/2015 8:18:59 AM
Waymark Code: WMNGNQ
Published By: Groundspeak Premium Member Outspoken1
Views: 0

Long Description:

The quotation, "time like an ever rolling stream", is below and to the left of the sundial and is created from brass letters. The quotation is taken from a poem by Isaac Watts entitled "Our God, Our Help" that words from which are also used in a hymn.

The Poetry Foundation website quotes the poem as:

Our God, our help in ages past,
   Our hope for years to come,
Our shelter from the stormy blast,
   And our eternal home:

Under the shadow of thy throne
   Thy saints have dwelt secure;
Sufficient is thine arm alone,
   And our defense is sure.

Before the hills in order stood
   Or earth received her frame,
From everlasting thou art God,
   To endless years the same.

Thy word commands our flesh to dust,
   “Return, ye sons of men”;
All nations rose from earth at first,
   And turn to earth again.

A thousand ages in thy sight
   Are like an evening gone;
Short as the watch that ends the night
   Before the rising sun.

The busy tribes of flesh and blood,
   With all their lives and cares,
Are carried downwards by thy flood,
   And lost in following years.

Time, like an ever-rolling stream,
   Bears all its sons away;
They fly forgotten, as a dream
   Dies at the opening day.

Like flowery fields the nations stand,
   Pleased with the morning light;
The flowers beneath the mower’s hand
   Lie withering e’er ’tis night.

Our God, our help in ages past,
   Our hope for years to come,
Be thou our guard while troubles last,
   And our eternal home.

The Sundials website, in an article dated 17th January 2000 (scroll down the page), tells us:

The Putney Society decided, at the end of 1998, to erect a sundial as our contribution to marking the Millennium. We were fortunate to obtain permission to put up a vertical strip dial on the south face of Zeeta House at the junction of Putney High Street and the Upper Richmond Road. We wanted a design which would reflect our commitment to improving the environment, to echo our swan logo and to reflect the importance of the river to Putney

The base plate of our sundial is the swan, the gnomon (the shadow casting rod) is in the form of an oar, and the we hope that the design of the sundial proves an enhancement to the local environment. The dial is made of brass, which will gradually oxidise and become darker, making the sundial more prominent. Our designer, David Harber, suggested that we add a motto as these are traditional and uplifting features associated with sundials, which were often seen as oracles as well as timepieces. You will see that the motto is "Time like an ever rolling stream" which has echoes of the motto on the sundial on the tower of St Mary's Church at the other end of the High Street.

Zeeta House Upper Richmond Road Putney London United Kingdom

Website: [Web Link]

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