Catalog Archive
Auction 118, Lot 83

"Coeli Stellati Christiani Haemisphaerium Posterius", Cellarius/Schenk & Valck

Subject: Celestial

Period: 1708 (published)

Publication: Harmonia Macrocosmica

Color: Hand Color

20 x 17 inches
50.8 x 43.2 cm

This stunning celestial chart presents the constellations according to Christian symbolism. It is based on the work of the early 17th century astronomer, Julius Schiller, who sought to replace the traditional pagan symbols with ones derived from Judeo-Christian sources. Specifically, Schiller replaced the zodiacal constellations with the twelve apostles, the constellations north of the zodiac by figures from the New Testament and the constellations south of the zodiac by figures from the Old Testament. Instead of being projected from the pole, the map is centered on the equinox and the ecliptic bisects the map instead of encircling it. On this chart the constellation of Sagittarius is represented by Matthew, Aquarius by Judas Thaddeus, Pisces by Matthias, Aries by Peter, and Taurus by Andrew. Other constellations include Mary Magdalene as Cassiopeia, Joseph as Orion, and Cygnus became St. Helena, holding the cross. The river of Eridamus has been replaced by the parting of the Red Sea. This is one of the most unusual charts in the Cellarius compendium.

References: Warner p. 54, 1D; Whitfield p. 93.

Condition: A

Strong impression and fabulous old color. Wide original margins with some minor damage to paper edges.

Estimate: $4,000 - $5,000

Sold for: $3,750

Closed on 3/6/2007