Catalog Archive

Auction 125, Lot 60

"Systema Ideale Quo Exprimitur Aquarum per Canales hyrdagogos subterraneos…", Kircher, Athanasius

Subject: Cartographic Miscellany

Period: 1682 (published)


Color: Black & White

16 x 13 inches
40.6 x 33 cm

The Jesuit scholar Athanasius Kircher was one of the first compilers of semi-scientific knowledge about the physical features of the world. This unusual copper engraving shows a cross-section of the earth's interior with its magma core and underground water sources. The surface of the earth is shown with erupting volcanoes and ships sailing in the oceans. Clouds and four wind-heads surround the sphere. A decorative title cartouche completes the fanciful composition.


Condition: B

A dark impression on a sheet with a couple creases. The sheet has a large portion of the lower block of text missing, with paper added to fill it in. Centerfold is split 1" at the bottom. The map could easily be framed to cover the missing text and would still be a very nice presentation.

Estimate: $750 - $900

Sold for: $750

Closed on 9/24/2008