The celestial Coronelli globe

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The Coronelli Globe, built in 1697, is a masterpiece or the astronomical Observatory’s patrimony.
Today restored and integrated in a presentation setup where it can be compared to modern astronomical surveys, it is presented to the public during the visits of the Observatory.

We have evidences that the globe has been in the Observatory collections since more than 100 years, and it is today one of its masterpieces. Built in 1697 by Gatellier, a parisian globe mounts builder, it was produced using engravings from Vincenzo Coronelli (1650-1718), a venitian cartographer monk made famous for creating two gigantic globes for the king Louis XIV, and exhibited in the Marly castle. Reduced versions of these globes would be later mass-produced. The Strasbourg globe is from the second set of globes that have been produced, and shows the 36 Ptolemy constellations and the exquisite engravings of Coronelli.

The globe had progressively deteriorated, and could no longer be displayed to the public. Its restoration was needed. The astronomical observatory, together with the University and the Jardin des Sciences, initiated a preservation and valorisation project with support from the public.

The restoration campaign

A team of specialists was needed. The first phase cost 35 000€. A large fraction of the cost was provided by the Strasbourg University, with support from the Investissements d’Avenir program. 5 000€ were still needed to fund the project. The Fondation Université de Strasbourg, the Jardin des Sciences and the astronomical observatory collaborated and launched a crowdfunding campaign, which received a strong support.

Valorisation and scenography

Once restored, the globe was installed in a protective showcase, integrating an innovative videoprojection system allowing to compare the Coronelli globe to modern sky surveys, using the Aladin Lite service developed by CDS.

More information

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