Copernican and Ptolemaic Armillary Spheres

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This engraving was probably created in France in the 18th century. The “SPHERE DE COPERNIC” on the left is a model of the solar system with the Sun in the middle and planetary orbits out to that of Saturn. Other circles represent the colures, the zodiac with the ecliptic, and the equator. The “SPHERE DE PTOLEMÉE” on the right is an armillary sphere with the Earth in the middle and bands for the several celestial circles. Both instruments have baroque stands.
Currently not on view
Physical Description
paper (overall material)
overall: 12 1/2 in x 13 1/2 in; 31.75 cm x 34.29 cm
overall: 21 1/8 in x 23 1/8 in x 7/8 in; 53.6575 cm x 58.7375 cm x 2.2225 cm
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Medicine and Science: Physical Sciences
Science & Mathematics
Prints from the Physical Sciences Collection
Data Source
National Museum of American History