Posted Date: 24 April 2012
As part of McTear’s Silver, Collectables & Furniture Auction on 3rd May, we are delighted to offer this striking pair of celestial and terrestrial table globes. Produced by Kirkwood’s, the globes are inscribed, one with “Kirkwood’s New Terrestrial Globe with the very latest discoveries” and the other “Kirkwood’s New Celestial Globe”. Always big hits at auction, globes of this type are highly sought after and we anticipate much interest in this pair.
The sphericity of the Earth was established by Hellenistic astronomy in the 3rd century BC, and the earliest terrestrial globe appeared from that period. The earliest known example was constructed by Crates of Mallus in Cilicia (now Çukurova in modern-day Turkey), in the mid-2nd century BC. Celestial globes show the apparent positions of the stars in the sky. They omit the Sun, Moon and planets because the positions of these bodies vary relative to those of the stars, but the ecliptic, along which the Sun moves, is indicated.
Although in need of some ‘TLC’, this pair of table globes is most interesting as evidence of advances in mapping the world and skies which caused so much excitement in the scientific and adventuring worlds. The pair of globes is estimated at £500-800 though we are sure they will fly out of the saleroom on Thursday!