Nuremberg: printed by Christoph Gerhard for Paulus Fürst, 1666.
First edition of one of the most beautiful instrument books published in the seventeenth century and certainly one of the rarest, particularly with the full complement of plates. “The plates, superbly executed by Jacob van der Heyden, were probably intended to be mounted and assembled to form several instruments, each with a revolving plate measuring 27cm in diameter and a movable pointer. Each was to be supported on an approximately 12cm base” (W.P. Watson, Cat. 18)..
First edition of one of the most beautiful instrument books published in the seventeenth century and certainly one of the rarest, particularly with the full complement of plates. This work is an enlargement, by his student Sturm, of Habrecht’s famous treatise on the making of celestial and terrestrial globes, published in 1628/29. Much influenced by Blaeu and Hondius, Habrecht published a pair of printed celestial and terrestrial globes at Strasbourg in 1621. The first edition of Planiglobium included two large planispheres (although they are lacking from almost all copies), these being polar stereographic celestial charts of the northern and southern constellations. In the present edition Sturm augmented the text, reprinted these planispheres from the same plates (one of them is still dated 1628), and added to them a further 12 plates, including two handsome polar projections of the world, and ten engravings showing the various parts of his celestial and terrestrial globes. “The plates, superbly executed by Jacob van der Heyden, were probably intended to be mounted and assembled to form several instruments, each with a revolving plate measuring 27cm in diameter and a movable pointer. Each was to be supported on an approximately 12cm base” (W.P. Watson, Cat. 18). Regarding the two planispheres, Warner writes (TheSky Explored, p. 104): “Habrecht derived the bulk of the information for this globe from Plancius. The origin of Rhombus – a constellation near the south pole that as Reticulum survives today – is unclear. It may perhaps derive from the quadrilateral arrangement of stars seen by Vespucci around the Antarctic pole. In any case, Rhombus as such seems to have made its first appearance on Habrecht’s globe.” Habrecht added to his celestial globe several cometary paths, an innovation that was followed by many Central European globe makers. Despite being an obvious Americanum (see for example pp. 220, 237, 249, and America pictured on one of the maps), this work is not in Sabin, JCB, Palmer and other standard bibliographies. The Honeyman copy (Sotheby’s, November 6, 1979, £1100 = $2346) is the only other complete copy on ABPC/RBH since 1950 and it had significant defects (some plates torn or repaired, title page defective and repaired, O2 torn, one leaf with marginal repair, browned). The Macclesfield copy, sold in 2004 for £3600, lacked the title page. A set of the unfolded plate sheets (without the text) sold at Christie’s in 2010 for £10,000. OCLC lists Brown, Harvard (both lacking the plates) and Chicago only in North America.
“European discovery of the New World helped to establish the status of the terrestrial globe as equal to its celestial counterpart, for it was ideally suited to whet the imagination of those who remained at home but were eager to learn of the new and hitherto unknown lands and people about whom so much speculation had long existed. This interest stimulated a real boom in the cartographic industry. Map and globe makers set out to produce different versions of the world by adjusting and correcting the existing Ptolemaic picture. Through this process of continual adjustment old and rare terrestrial globes have become valuable artefacts, on which the history of world exploration is recorded both visually, by the tracks of the various epoch-making circumnavigations, and verbally, by lengthy legends inscribed on the globes …
“During the fifteenth century, when the first western terrestrial globes emerged in the wake of the Latin translation of Ptolemy’s Geography, the Earth was firmly believed to be immobile in the centre of the universe. Thus, as far as models of the Earth are concerned, it would have sufficed to make a terrestrial sphere with a fixed mounting. However, the dominant construction in early globe making was more complex. It consisted of a mobile sphere mounted in a stand with a number of accessories – a movable meridian ring, a fixed horizon ring, and an hour circle with pointer. These accessories served to demonstrate the time-dependent phenomena of the world around us in terms of the then generally accepted Ptolemaic concept of the First Mover and the annual motion of the Sun around the Earth.
“In the common pairing of the terrestrial and celestial globes the diurnal motion of the First Mover is realized by the rotation of both spheres around the poles of the world. In use, these spheres always have to be turned from east to west in accordance with the Ptolemaic world system. For a proper understanding of the common Ptolemaic globe, it is particularly important to realize that the mobility of a terrestrial example has nothing whatsoever to do with the motion of the Earth. Neither is it a matter of simple viewing convenience. When the sphere of a terrestrial globe is turned, it is the daily motion of the Sun that is reproduced … Thus, in the terrestrial globe the motion of the First Mover is imparted to the ‘sphere of the Sun’ and in the celestial globe to the ‘sphere of the fixed stars’. With this construction the whole series of phenomena which mattered in daily life as well as in education, such as the rising and setting of the Sun (with the terrestrial globe) and of the stars (with the celestial globe), could be demonstrated. The meridian ring serves to rectify the globe for the latitude of a place. The hour circle with pointer on top of the meridian ring can be set to local time, as measured through the diurnal motion of the Sun.
“The annual motion of the Sun around the Earth is realized, only indirectly, by two design features of these globes. First, the ecliptic is drawn on both the terrestrial and the celestial sphere. Second, the position of the Sun in the zodiac throughout the year is displayed graphically on the horizon ring. Having established the Sun’s position at a particular time of the year, it can then be located on the ecliptic drawn on the sphere and its motion for that season demonstrated.
“Thus, the common terrestrial globe is not simply a model of the Earth: it also represents a model of the sphere of the Sun … One may well wonder why the sphere of the Sun was combined with the terrestrial globe. After all, the celestial globe also includes the ecliptic in its features … However, celestial globes can only demonstrate time-dependent phenomena in general terms. They do not show how time is related to the geographical location of a place and, for such problems as the difference in time between two places at different longitudes, the celestial sphere of the Sun has to be used in combination with the terrestrial globe … With the rise of the ocean-going trade in the sixteenth century and the increasing use of astronomical methods in navigation, the relationship between time and space became an important theme in navigational teaching …
“The basic construction of both the common terrestrial and celestial globe changed very little from the end of the fifteenth century to the middle of the nineteenth. In contrast to armillary spheres, globes were hardly affected by the change from the Ptolemaic to the Copernican world system, because their value as problem-solving devices was not challenged by it. We are, after all, living on planet Earth and our outlook is by definition geocentric and we do see the Sun ‘rising’ and ‘setting’ (even though we now know that is it our motion, and not that of the Sun, which creates this illusion) … the construction of Copernican globes remained an isolated phenomenon. Most globe makers of the nineteenth century continued to produce Ptolemaic globes as if no Copernican revolution had taken place” (Dekker, pp. 7-8).
An account of one of Habrecht’s terrestrial globes, the construction of which is described in this book, is given by Levinson (Terrestrial and Celestial Globes, Vol. II (1921), p. 51). “In an artistic cartouche to the south of the East Indian Islands and within ‘Terra Australis’ is the following signed dedication: ‘To the Most Illustrious and Most Generous Lord Eberhardt Ruler in Ruppelstein, Hohenau and Geroldseck in the Vosges, Divine Emperor Matties II and also the Most Serene Maximilian Archduke of Austria, the Exalted President of the Provincial Orders of the Cameria, and those on this side of the mountains, sprung from the Ancient Ducal Family of Spoleto, my Most Gracious Lord, this triple globe, that is celestial, convex and concave terrestrial, corrected according to the latest information, gives and dedicates Isaac Habrecht, philosopher and physician of Strassburg.’ In the northern part of North America is a legend referring to the expeditions of Davis, Schouten, and Le Maire reading, ‘Toward the Arctic pole the last voyage up to the present was made, with Herculean labors, by Davis an Englishman. Around the Antarctic a strait has lately been discovered by William Schouten and named Le Maire, and this, up to the present, is the extreme limit of navigation, although no one doubts that the greatest wonders of all the world lie hidden under the poles, the discovery of which, it may be that Almighty God reserves for his own time. Printed by Jacob von Heyden of Strassburg.’ It is probable that the Jacob von Heyden here referred to was a relative of Christian Heyden of Nürnberg, mathematician and globe maker of renown. Below the legend last quoted is a brief one reading, ‘North America discovered by Christopher Columbus in the year 1492.’ This appears to have been quoted from the Hondius globe of the year 1618. The austral continent is referred to as ‘Terra Australis incognita,’ and near New Guinea is inscribed the following, likewise quoted from Hondius: ‘So called because its shores are much like those of African Guinea. It is called by some the land of Piccinaculi: and it is uncertain whether it is an island or a part of the Australian continent.’ A considerable number of brief legends appear upon different parts of the globe map, each having a local significance. In coloring the map attention was given to the representation of territorial boundaries which gives an added interest to the globe. The ‘Meridianus Primus’ is made to pass through the Island of Corvo, and other meridians are drawn at intervals of ten degrees. The loxodromic lines, as on the Hondius globes, are made a conspicuous feature of the map, having their crossing centers at longitudes 0°, 90°, 180°, and 270° on the equator, and on the prime meridian at latitude 35° both north and south, as well as at the same latitude on the opposite side of the sphere, where the prime meridian becomes the meridian of 180°. Habrecht appears to have followed somewhat closely the globes of Hondius for his geographical data.”
The National Maritime Museum gives the following account of a celestial globe made by Habrecht. “Astronomical details on the sphere show a labelled magnitude table to the left of Auriga. The Milky Way and the Magellanic Clouds are labelled, and there are labels for the nova in Cassiopeia, Cygnus and Ophiuchus. There are also labels for comets with dates in seven constellations. A total of six stars and four star groups are named. The 48 Ptolemaic constellations and four of the non-Ptolemaic constellations are drawn. Eight southern constellations are drawn as well as those of Plancius. The constellations are drawn in a style which differs from the then popular Saenredam style, first introduced on Blaeu’s 340 mm celestial globe of 1598/9. Habrecht appears to have copied a number of non-Ptolemaic constellations from one of the globes of van den Keere and Plancius, where, for the first time, a group of new constellations were depicted. As Habrecht's globe is, so far, the oldest known source with the constellation Rhombus, he is credited with its discovery” (collections.rmg.co.uk/collections/objects/19805.html).
Isaac II Habrecht was born at Strasbourg in 1589, the son of the clockmaker Isaac I Habrecht (1544-1620) and his second wife Marguerite Beck; Isaac I was, with his brother Josias (1552–1575), a clockmaker in Schaffhausen, Switzerland.The Habrecht brothers were commissioned to build the famous Strasbourg cathedral astronomical clock designed by Conrad Dasypodius and completed in 1574. Isaac II did not follow the family clock-making tradition but chose an academic career. He enrolled at the University of Basel in August 1610, where he studied mathematics and medicine. He obtained his doctorate in medicine with the disputation ‘Crisiologia sive de diebus critisis ac decretoriis disputatio inauguralis’ on June 21, 1617. After graduating Habrecht undertook a journey to London, reporting in his diary: ‘I have made my languages four-fold, adding French and Spanish’. Returning to Strasbourg, he worked as a doctor and was appointed physician to the Count of Hanau-Lichtenberg. He also became professor of astronomy and mathematics at Strasbourg. He published pamphlets on several astronomical phenomena, including the comet of 1618, dedicating it to Count Hans Reinhardt of Hanau-Zweibrücken. He designed a famous celestial globe in 1621which so impressed Jacob Bartsch, Kepler’s son-in-law and the first to use the term ‘planisphere’ on a star chart, that he modelled his own work upon it [Usus astronomicus planisphaerii stellate, Strasbourg, 1624] – “Bartsch wrote that he had learned of the new constellations through Habrecht’s globe” (Warner, p. 14). In 1628 Habrecht sent his Planiglobium Coeleste to Kepler’s friend Wilhelm Schickard (1562-1635) in Tübingen, initiating a correspondence which lasted until 1633 about astronomical books, instruments and observations. The correspondence was preceded by a dispute between Habrecht and Schickard on the meteor of November 1623. Kepler’s frequent correspondent Mathias Bernegger sent him a copy of Habrecht’s treatise on the globe. Habrecht died of the plague on October 10, 1633 in Strasbourg, shortly after his appointment as professor there.
Johann Christoph Sturm (1635-1703) was born in Hilpoltstein, south of Nuremberg.Due to the religious turmoil at that time, he had to leave Hilpoltstein in 1645 and initially fled with his parents to Weissenburg, where he was admitted to the Latin School.In 1653, the theologian Daniel Wülfer (1617-1685) brought him to Nuremberg.In 1656 he began his studies in Jena, where he was tutored in mathematics by Erhard Weigel (1625-1699).In 1660 he moved to Leiden for a year, where he studied under Johann de Raey (1622-1702) and Nicolai Goldmann (1611-1665).The following year he completed his studies in Jena.Sturm worked from 1664 as a pastor at Deiningen; while there, he translated the ‘Sand Reckoner’ of Archimedes from Greek into German and published it in Nuremberg.This led to his appointment as professor of mathematics in Altdorf, where he was often referred to as the ‘Altdorfer Archimedes’; he remained at Altdorf until his death. In 1672 Sturm introduced a ‘Collegium Experimentale’ at Altdorf; this made him one of the pioneers of experimental instruction in Germany, and led to his book Collegium Experimentale sive Curiosum (1676). He wrote several other highly successful school and university textbooks, including Mathesis enucleata (1689) and Mathesis Juvenilis (1699-1701), the second volume of which included a 282-page introduction to astronomy, one of the first didactic works on astronomy published in Germany. Sturm was a vehement Copernican, and consistently rejected astrology. In physics, Sturm was not, as is often claimed, a follower of Descartes.Rather, he was pragmatic, recognizing both Descartes and Aristotle as authorities, among many others; he consistently sought the hypothesis that best explained the experimental facts, irrespective of the source of the hypothesis.Sturm also published calendars; these first appeared under the pseudonym ‘Alethophilus von Uranien,’ and later under his own name.
A German edition of Planiglobium celeste ac terrestre was published at Nuremberg in the same year as the Latin edition. Houzeau & Lancaster lists a 1650 edition that is clearly an error, as Sturm would have been 15 years old at the time.
Houzeau and Lancaster 3039; Zinner 5089; Dekker (ed.), Globes at Greenwich: A Catalogue of the Globes and Armillary Spheres in the National Maritime Museum, 1998. Warner, The Sky Explored, pp. 104-5 and 2c.
4to (206 x 147 mm), pp. [vi], 172, , 176-320 with 14 folded engraved plates after Jacob van der Heyden (1573-1645), titles to Coeleste and Terrestre sections with engraved figures of globes, five engraved illustrations in text, with final blank SS4 (dedication leaf browned, some early leaves spotted, a few tears along folds). Contemporary calf (rubbed, joints cracked, lacking front free endpaper).