armillary sphere

Science Dictionary
armillary sphere   (är'mə-lěr'ē, är-mĭl'ə-rē)  Pronunciation Key 
An early astronomical device made of fixed and movable rings representing circles of the celestial sphere, such as the ecliptic and the celestial equator. It was used as early as the third century BCE as both a teaching instrument and an observational tool.
The American Heritage® Science Dictionary
Copyright © 2002. Published by Houghton Mifflin. All rights reserved.
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