Geometric Model by A. Harry Wheeler, Great Stellated Dodecahedron

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A stellation of a regular polyhedron is a polyhedron with faces formed by extending the sides of the faces of the regular polyhedron. For example, if one extends the sides of a regular pentagon, one can obtain a five-pointed star or pentagram. Considering the union of the twelve pentagrams formed from the twelve pentagonal faces of a regular dodecahedron, one obtains this surface, known as a great stellated dodecahedron. It also could be created by gluing appropriate triangular pyramids to the faces of a regular icosahedron – there are a total of sixty triangular faces.
The great stellated dodecahedron was published by Wenzel Jamnitzer in 1568. It was rediscovered by Johannes Kepler and published in his work Harmonice Mundi in 1619. The French mathematician Louis Poinsot rediscovered it in 1809, and the surface and three related stellations are known as a Kepler-Poinsot solids.
This white plastic model of a great stellated dodecahedron is marked on a paper sticker attached to one side: 43 (/) DIV. A. Harry Wheeler assigned the model number 43 in his scheme, and considered it as the fourth species of a dodecahedron.
Compare MA.304723.085, which is the same surface in paper.
Wenzel Jamnitzer, Perspectiva Corporum Regularium, Nuremberg, 1568.
Magnus J. Wenninger, Polyhedron Models, Cambridge: The University Press, 1971, p. 40.
A. H. Wheeler, Catalog of Models, A. H. Wheeler Papers, Mathematics Collections, National Museum of American History.
Currently not on view
date made
Wheeler, Albert Harry
place made
United States: Massachusetts, Worcester
Physical Description
plastic (overall material)
tan (overall color)
cut and glued (overall production method/technique)
average spatial: 14 cm x 14 cm x 14 cm; 5 1/2 in x 5 1/2 in x 5 1/2 in
ID Number
accession number
catalog number
Credit Line
Gift of Helen M. Wheeler
See more items in
Medicine and Science: Mathematics
Science & Mathematics
Mathematical Association of America Objects
Data Source
National Museum of American History


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