Catalog Archive
Auction 102, Lot 69

"The Newtonian System - Plate 6", 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.

Very unusual Baxter print showing the Newtonian view of the Solar System. This depicts the orbit of the Earth, as well as a Fixed Star as they revolve around the sun. The Muggletonian argument by Isaac Frost against Newton's ideas is along the bottom of the diagram. Wonderful, simple piece, engraved by W. P. Clubb & Son.


Condition: B

Light scattered foxing, primarily in margins.

Estimate: $220 - $275

Sold for: $150

Closed on 3/5/2003