1720 Homann, Doppelmayr & Eimmart Antique Twin Hemisphere Celestial Chart, Map. Planisphaerium Caeleste

Cartographer :Friedrich Arnold Friedrich Arnold

This magnificent original hand coloured copper plate engraved antique double hemisphere celestial chart, showing constellations of the northern and southern hemispheres depicted as allegorical figures, animals and scientific instruments after Georg Christoph Eimmart (1638-1705) was published by Johann Baptist Homann and Johann Gabriel Doppelmayr (1677-1750) in ca 1720.

The stars are shown in six degrees of magnitude according to a key in the center between the hemispheres. The selection and style of the constellations followed that of Firmamentum Sociescianum sive Uranographia (1687) by the Polish astronomer Johannes Hevelius, whose name is noted in the subtitle of the chart. The subtitle further indicates that the chart also draws on the work of Edmund Halley, the British astronomer for whom Halley’s Comet is named. There are numerous variants of this chart published in Germany in the 18th century; this example, Planispaerium Caeleste by Homann, bears the name of the firm (Officina Homanniana) under the border in the lower margin, together with the name of Georg Christoph Eimmart (1638-1705), the Nuremberg astronomer.

General Definitions:
Paper thickness and quality: - Heavy and stable
Paper color : - off white
Age of map color: - Original
Colors used: - Yellow, green, blue, pink
General color appearance: - Authentic
Paper size: - 25in x 21 1/2in (635m x 545mm)
Plate size: - 23in x 19 1/2in (585mm x 495mm)
Margins: - Min 1/2in (12mm)

Margins: - None
Plate area: - None
Verso: - None

The outer borders of the chart are decorated with six inset diagrams against a background of clouds including the planetary models of Tycho Brahe, Ptolemy, and Copernicus. The other 3 diagrams show the illumination of the moon by the sun, the revolution of the earth around the sun, and the effect of the moon on tides.
Various firms in Amsterdam, Nuremberg and Augsburg published double hemisphere constellation charts based on the work of George Eimmart titled Planispaerium Caeleste or Planisphaerium Coeleste during the first eight decades of the 18th century, which can be divided fundamentally into two different versions. The prolific Nuremberg publisher Johann Baptist Homann first published Planispaerium Caeleste in his Neuer Atlas in 1707, bearing the inscription Opera G.C. Eimmarti. prostat in Officina Homanniana, meaning Work of Georg Christoph Eimmart offered for sale by the Homann Workshop. That chart has six inset diagrams. Scholar Robert H. van Gent notes the existence of similar prints of this format published by de Wit, Funck, Schenck, and Lotter, as well as by R. & J. Ottens in Amsterdam. The other versions vary more considerably with the inclusion of a seventh inset diagram and a figural illustration in the upper center. These include ones published by Melchior Rein in Augsburg and by Georg Matthäus Seutter (1647–1756) in Nuremberg.
Johann Gabriel Doppelmayr and Johann Baptist Homann were frequent collaborators in producing celestial and astronomical charts for atlases published by Homann and issued under various titles. The major two compilations of Dopplemayr’s works were published by Homann Heirs: Atlas Coelestis in quo Mundus Spectabilis et in Eodem Stellarum Omnium Phoenomena Notabilia, issued as 30 plates in 1742, and the revised edition of this work Atlas Novus Coelestis, in quo Mundus Spectabilis, et in Eodem tam Errantium quam Inerrantium Stellarum Phoenomena Notabilia, issued in 1748 (with an additional plate depicting the solar eclipse of 1748).
Nonetheless, these charts have a complicated publishing history that is not fully known. Some of these charts had appeared in earlier Homann editions such as his first atlas, the Neuer Atlas (Nuremberg: 1707), Atlas von Hundert Charten (Nuremberg: 1712), Grossen Atlas (Nuremberg: 1716), and Atlas Portatilis Coelestis (Nuremberg: 1723). Homann also issued geographical maps in various atlases that may have included celestial plates (particularly composite atlases), and Homann and his heirs presumably sold separately issued maps. Further, three additional celestial and astronomy plates have been located in at least one Homann celestial compilation atlas (1742, 1748, or later), though not among the 30 maps of the standard issue of Atlas Coelestis in quo Mundus Spectabilis, namely Sphaerarum Artificialium Typica Repraesentatio (globes and armillary sphere), Neu invertirte Geographische Universal (clock), and Planisphaerium Caeleste (double hemisphere celestial chart).
Doppelmayr, a professor of mathematics at the Aegidien Gymnasium at Nuremberg, was an acclaimed German geographer and astronomer who wrote on astronomy, geography, cartography, trigonometry, sundials and mathematical instruments. He was also involved in the production of globes as part of a larger goal to bring the scientific ideas of the Enlightenment to a broader public. In service of that idea, Doppelmayr translated several works into German including Nicholas Bion’s 1699 work L’usage des globes célestes et terrestes, et des sphères [The Usage of Celestial and Terrestrial Globes and of Spheres]. Doppelmayr was elected to several scientific societies, including the Berlin Academy of Sciences, the Royal Society and the St. Petersburg Academy of Sciences.

Please note all items auctioned are genuine, we do not sell reproductions. A Certificate of Authenticity (COA) can be issued on request.