Celestial Globe, Nuremberg, 1728, 32 cm, two sets of 12 gores from ecliptic to the poles. The axis runs through the celestial poles.
This celestial globe by Johann Gabriel Doppelmayr was accurate for the epoch 1730 and drew on the star catalogue of Johannes Hevelius of 1690. Also depicted are the paths of several comets observed by Hevelius, Johann Kepler, Giovanni Cassini and John Flamsteed.
There were other German globe-makers in the early 1700s but Doppelmayr’s globes dominated the German market until the end of the 18th century. They were revised in the 1750s and ﬁnally in 1792 by Wolfgang Paul Jenig (d. 1805), 42 years after Doppelmayr’s death.
Long before he published his ﬁrst celestial globe in 1728, Doppelmayr had taken a keen interest in astronomy, and he spent some time studying the subject in Leiden, one of the leading universities of the time.
After his studies he returned to his native town of Nuremberg, and, as a teacher, was very active in promoting new scientiﬁc ideas. In the early 1700s he had compiled several celestial maps, which had been published in various atlases by his friend Johann Baptist Homann. These maps were later collected and published in 1742 as the Atlas Novus Coelestis, for which Doppelmayr became well known.
He also translated several scientiﬁc works into German, including Nicolas Bion’s L’usage des globes célestes et terrestres (1699) and John Wilkins’s Discovery of a World in the Moone (1638), which advanced the relatively new theories of Copernicus and Galileo.