2nd period

Welser's globe

Nova et integra universi orbis descriptio
Christoff Schniepp
after 1550
Augsbourg, Germany
diam. 22 cm
W : 27 cm, H : 36 cm
etched copper

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In the mid-16th century, the Holy Roman Empire dominated European trade and finance, notably with families of merchants and bankers such as the Fuggers and the Welsers. This globe was made for the latter, who undertook expeditions to the Indies and attempted to colonize Venezuela.
Hand-etched on copper, it is a one-of-a-kind piece whose cartography was inspired by contemporary world maps and globes. For the Welsers, a prestigious object such as this was a means of asserting their power and wealth and the geographical reach of their trading ambitions. The decorative aspect of the globe is enhanced by the meridians and legs; its marble base may have been added at a later date.

Wooden globe

Terrestrial globe aka "wooden globe"
c. 1535
diam. 21 cm
H : 43 cm
painted wood

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This globe, found in Italy in the late 19th century, bears no signature, date or indication of provenance. The geography and choice of place names evoke German cartography of the first half of the 16th century, influenced by the cartographer and globe-maker Johan Schöner. The production date has been estimated at about 1535, judging by the inclusion of the latest European discoveries in the New World and by the fact that America and Asia are shown as a single large continent.
The globe is formed of a wooden sphere coated with a layer of plaster that has chipped away in places. It spins on an iron rod, on a turned stand painted red with traces of gilding. Wooden instruments of this kind are thought to have been used as geographical and astronomical teaching aids.

Robert de Vaugondy's Celestial Globe

Celestial globe
Didier Robert de Vaugondy
Paris, France
diam. 23 cm
W : 33 cm, H : 52 cm
printed paper

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Didier Robert de Vaugondy (1723-1786), the son of a famous cartographer, specialised in the production and sale of globes. In 1751, at the request of King Louis XV, he designed a pair of globes for the ships of the royal navy.
These luxury globes, 45.5 cm in diameter, were revised and updated in a new edition in 1764, and published in a smaller format to meet growing demand from a middle class clientele. The precise model presented here, which features the latest discoveries, is a smaller, 23-cm version of the celestial globe, highly representative of French Enlightenment production.

Terrestrial Globe by Larochette and Bonnefont

Terrestrial globe
Charles Larochette, Louis Bonnefont
Paris, France
diam. 39 cm
W : 52 cm, H : 92 cm
printed paper

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Terrestrial globe
Charles Larochette, Louis Bonnefont
after 1873
Paris, France
diam. 28 cm
H : 49 cm
printed paper

Gores for the terrestrial globe by C. Larochette and L. Bonnefont
Charles Larochette, Louis Bonnefont
Paris, France
L : 50 cm, W : 65 cm
printed paper

In 1867, Charles Larochette and Louis Bonnefont produced a large globe with a diameter of 50 cm, intended for teaching purposes; chosen to represent the quality of French geographical production, it was awarded a medal at the Paris World's Fair. Smaller versions were also made and distributed in France, often for educational use. This 39-cm floor globe with fluted legs is a fairly luxurious model, presented here with a more common 28-cm version and the printed gores that were used to make these globes.

From the collection of Bibliothèque nationale de France, Paris
©origin of source Gallica / Bibliothèque nationale de France

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