Catalog Archive
Auction 156, Lot 49

"Haemisphaeria Sphaerarum Rectae et Obliquae Utriusque Motus et Longitudines tam Coelestes quam Terrestres ac Stellarum Affectiones Monsrantia", Cellarius/Schenk & Valck

Subject: Solar System

Period: 1708 (published)

Publication: Atlas Coelestis seu Harmonia Macrocosmica

Color: Hand Color

19.8 x 16.9 inches
50.3 x 42.9 cm

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 complex chart illustrates the motions of both the upright sphere (the equatorial co-ordinate system) and the oblique sphere (the ecliptic co-ordinate system); the celestial and terrestrial longitudes; and the influences of the stars. The dramatic cloud background is filled with putti and celestial figures.

References: Kanas, pp. 191-194.

Condition: B+

Original color in the sphere with later coloring in the decorative surroundings. There is light creasing and minor toning along the centerfold, as well as marginal soiling.

Estimate: $800 - $950

Sold for: $450

Closed on 2/17/2016