Boston Public Library

Map 1

Andreas Cellarius (fl. 1656-1702)  “Coeli Stellati Christiani Hæmisphærum Prius,” in Harmonia Macrocosmica … Amsterdam, 1661
Andreas Cellarius (fl. 1656-1702). “Coeli Stellati Christiani Hæmisphærum Prius,” in Harmonia Macrocosmica… Amsterdam, 1661
While most Renaissance and Baroque geographers mapped the Earth, a few directed their attention to the skies. They observed and mapped the heavenly bodies and theorized about their relationship to the Earth. This increased astronomical knowledge was recorded in a lavish celestial atlas, illustrated with beautifully engraved and hand-colored plates.

Chapters of this treatise describe the magnitude of the stars, various lunar and solar theories, the nature of the planets, and the celestial constellations. In contrast to the generally accepted practice of depicting constellations as classical mythological figures, this plate reconfigures them from a Christian perspective.