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PICCOLOMINI, Alessandro.

De le stelle fisse libro uno.

[Bound with] De la sfera del mondo.

Stock Code
98418
Venice, Giovanni Varisco, 1559
£3,000

An early edition of De le stelle fisse, the first printed celestial atlas. Notable for the depiction of the Corona Australe or Southern Cross.

The book contains forty-seven star maps (numbered i-xlviii, xxiv not used as always), one for each of the Ptolemaic constellations with the exception of Equuleus. In this work Piccolomini pioneered the use of letters to identify the stars - a system later adopted by Bayer and, through him, by all modern astronomers. Following the first edition of 1540, there were at least ten further Italian editions, and three French and Latin translations, within the first century after the initial publication, a testament to the popularity and importance of Piccolomini's work.

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Description

Two works in one vol., 4to De le stelle fisse: engraved title, 244pp., incorporating 47 full-page woodcut star maps printed recto and verso; De la sfera del mondo: engraved title, 12, 99pp. illustrations in text, eighteenth-century Italian half calf, marbled boards, morocco label, light soiling to title, an excellent copy.

Bibliography

BM STC (Italian), p154; Brown (Astronomical Atlases), pp17-18; Houzeau & Lancaster 2491; cf. Deborah J. Warner, (The Sky Explored: Celestial Cartography 1500-1800).

Stock ID:98418

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