The Logo

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It was agreed at the meeting of the Royal Meteorological Society's Council held on 19 June 1901 that, in memory of George James Symons, who died in 1900, a gold medal would be awarded from time to time for distinguished work in connection with meteorological science. A representation of the Tower of the Winds at Athens would appear on the reverse side of this medal. The medal was designed by Mr Frank Bowcher of Chiswick and the dies for it were furnished and executed by Mr John Pinches of 27 Oxendon Street, London SW. The design, showing the Tower of the Winds has the inscription 'Royal Meteorological Society' around it. It was adopted as the logo in 1902 and has appeared on the title page of the Quarterly Journal since 1903. The current RMetS logo was introduced in 2004. The Tower of the Winds design is still used on the back of the Symons Medal.

 

The logo to the left features the Tower of the Winds. The Tower of the Winds, or, to give it its proper title, the Horologium of Andronikos Kyrrhestes, was built about 40BC by the astronomer Andronikos of Kyrrhos. This octagonal marble building, which stands about twelve metres high, originally served the triple purpose of sundial, water-clock (clepsydra) and weather-vane. According to Vitruvius (Marcus Vitruvius Pollio, Roman architect of the 1st century AD), the tower was originally surmounted by a revolving bronze Triton holding a wand which pointed out the face of the building corresponding to the wind.

 

When the new logo was designed, The Royal Meteorological Society had been in existence for over 150 years. For the last 100 of those years, the Society has been using a representation of The Tower of the Winds in Athens. Research has shown that this image was originally adopted as the obverse of the Symons medal and then used to represent the Society without any real consideration of how it should work as a logo. As digital technology has progressed in recent times, it became more evident that the Tower of the Winds did not fulfil the requirements of the Society to present itself professionally in the modern digital media. One of the particular limitations of the Tower of the Winds symbol was that the detail and the circular form do not reproduce well digitally, particularly on screen and at small sizes. Additionally, the image itself is not well known or understood outside of the Society.

The new logo features cloud representation in the lower left corner of the rectangle, with the upper left corner showing a representation of the sun with rays extending from it across the entire body of the box.