Celestial globe, Dutch, 1625.
© Science Museum / Science & Society Picture Library
Detail showing the constellation of Argo (the ship). This celestial globe was made by Petrus Plancius (1552-1622) in Amsterdam, Holland. The Dutch were the first to make printed globes in large numbers and introduced the distinctive the four-legged globe stand. The star map used for this globe is based on then recent observations made by the pioneering Danish astronomer Tycho Brahe (1546-1601). The celestial globe is a three-dimensional model of the heavens on which the stars are plotted on the outside of a sphere. Originating in the Ancient World, it was probably inspired by the discovery that the Earth was round. The globe could be used to teach and demonstrate various astronomical principles.