Catalog Archive
Auction 132, Lot 54

"Hemisphaerii Borealis Coeli et Terrae Sphaeri Cascenographia", Cellarius, Andreas

Subject: Celestial

Period: 1660 (circa)


Color: Hand Color

19.8 x 17 inches
50.3 x 43.2 cm
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The Dutch-German mathematician and cosmographer Andreas Cellarius is best known for his spectacular celestial atlas, the Harmonia Macrocosmica. His atlas contained a description of ancient and contemporary astronomy including the theories of Ptolemy, Copernicus, and Tycho Brahe. The atlas was illustrated with twenty-nine engraved plates that are among the most beautiful celestial charts ever made. The charts include illustrations of the heavens and diagrams of the orbits of the Sun, Moon, and planets according to the different cosmological theories. They were richly adorned with elaborate cartouches and baroque elements such as putti in clouds, shells, garlands, as well as portraits of famous astronomers and astronomical instruments. The Harmonia Macrocosmica was published in 1660, and reissued in 1661 by the Amsterdam publisher Johannes Jansson as a supplement to his Atlas Novus. The plates were reissued again in 1708 by the Amsterdam publishers Gerard Valk and Petrus Schenk.

This stunning star chart presents the constellations in an external orientation between the north celestial pole and the vernal equinox. The constellations are based on the work of Petrus Plancius. The chart is surrounded by elaborate scenes of people and putti making astronomical observations and studying astronomy.

References: Kanas #7.1.2 and p.358, C.3.25.

Condition: B

Sharp impression with superb color, highlighted in gold. The margins have been professional restored using the leaf-casting method with nearly invisible repairs to the border and centerfold. There is some facsimile in the borders and a fingernail size part of the map just above the right title cartouche and in the bottom corners. This restoration was very skillfully executed.

Estimate: $4,000 - $5,000

Sold for: $2,200

Closed on 6/2/2010