Public Art : Macquarie's Obelisk
Sculptor : The obelisk was designed by Francis
Greenway and built by stonemason Edward Cureton.
Date Unveiled : 1818
Description : A locally quarried (believed to be from
Sydney Cove) fine grained white sandstone obelisk, designed in the Georgian period and detailed in the
Greek revival style. The elongated pyramid, which was a milestone for measuring of roads, lies on a narrow square
pedestal decorated by projecting cornice. The pedestal also has the original inscription on it, written in Roman
typeface (which was a typical Georgian style).
Location : Macquarie's Obelisk is located in the
oldest planned town square and urban park in Australia, Macquarie Place, Bridge Street, Sydney.
was erected in
To record that all the
Leading to the interior
of the Colony
are measured from it.
L. Macquarie Esq
Distance from Sydney
to Bathurst } 157m
From Sydney to Windsor 35 D
to Paramatta 15 1/2
to Liverpool 20
to Macquarie Tower
at the south head } 7
To the North Head
of Botany Bay } 14
History of Macquarie's Obelisk : The
'symbolic peg', known as Macquarie's Obelisk, marks the oldest milestone for measuring roads and the oldest urban
park (along with Hyde Park) in Australia. The stone was ordered by Governor Lachlan Macquarie and was designed by Colonial architect Francis Greenway and built by
stonemason, Edward Cureton and a bunch of convicts. On completion, poor old Governor Macquarie came under a bit
of flak for the stone monument by Commissioner Bigge (representative of the British Government) who declared it
far too expensive and unworthy for a colony town such as Sydney. Harsh words indeed. This may well have been the
straw that broke the camel's back because it wasn't long after that Macquarie decided to call it quits as