Catalog Archive
Auction 102, Lot 68

"The Newtonian System - Plate 3", Frost, Isaac

Subject: Solar System

Period: 1846 (circa)

Publication: Two Systems of Astronomy

Color: Hand Color

10.8 x 7.8 inches
27.4 x 19.8 cm

The Muggletonians were a small English religious sect that objected to "modern" science, particularly heliocentric astronomy and Newtonian physics. Founded in the 1650's by two cousins who received "messages from God" that they were God's chosen witnesses prophesized in the Book of Revelations to preach to the ungodly world in its final days. The sect lasted well into the Victorian era. Isaac Frost, a scientist and prominent member of the sect was instrumental in the refinement of the Muggletonian's geocentric astronomical theory. This chart is an authentic Baxter print, printed in color by a patented process using oil pigments. The process produced beautiful gradations of color, but was far too expensive for commercial use. These are among the scarcest of known Baxter prints, as they were meant to be circulated only among sect members. In addition to the scarcity, they are important documents in the history of the relationship between religion and science.

Beautifully shaded Baxter print depicting the solar system, from the Newtonian view. This depicts the orbit of the various planets as they revolve around the Sun, including Jupiter with four little moons. Noted as well is the distance between the sun and the various planets. The color on this piece is so delicately done that the Sun virtually glows. Engraved by W. P. Clubb & Son.


Condition: B

Scattered foxing, primarily in margins, with two spots in print. Still an very attractive piece

Estimate: $220 - $275

Sold for: $210

Closed on 3/5/2003