Terrestrial table globe
Wood, printed, papier-mâché and metal
It rests on its original turned wood column base
20.47 in height, Ø max 14.17 in; the sphere Ø 9.44 in (h 52 cm x Ø max 36.5 cm; the sphere Ø 24 cm)
Stato di conservazion:
there are small gaps, abrasions and stains on the surface. In some places very slight swellings on the surface can be noticed. The small circle of the hours is from a later period.
The globe is composed of two series of twelve printed paper gores, aligned and glued onto a sphere made with a chalky-based dough.
The meridian circle and the horizon circle are made of wood, also covered with printed paper.
The first has the degrees of latitude and the distances from the poles inscribed.
The circle of the horizon, on the other hand, details the amplitude, the direction of the winds, the days and months of the year and the names and symbols of the zodiac.
There are two distinct cartouches on the sphere.
One is located in the southern Indian Ocean, between South Africa and Australia. It bears the inscription:
Revu et Corrigé
par F.x Delamarche
Chez F.x Delamarche et Ch.les Dien
Rue du Jardinet n°. 13
The second one is found in the South Pacific Ocean, between New Zealand and South America. It bears the inscription:
dressé par Ordre
Par le S. Robert De Vaugondy
On the rest of the surface, continents and oceans appear with numerous geographical indications and references to the main explorations, especially those by Cook, but also by others, both contemporary and from previous eras.
A large part of central-eastern Africa is unexplored and, in the area of the great lakes, only a part of the Malawi basin is sketched in. The “Enderby Land” discovered by Biscoe in 1831 on the coast of Antarctica, south of Africa, is not marked.
The North American coasts are well outlined, but Alaska is not described and is only partially traced; it would become part of the United States in 1867.
Various islands in the Pacific and Indian Oceans are indicated.
Australia (name definitively used since 1824) is still called “Nouvelle Hollande”, while Tasmania is already represented as an island; it was circumnavigated by Matthew Flinders in 1798.
Charles-François Delamarche (1740-1817) founded his laboratory around 1770 and, in a few years, he became the most famous French cartographer and globe maker between the 18th and 19th centuries. After having acquired the laboratory of the late Didier Robert de Vaugondy (1723-1786; himself a renowned cartographer who continued the family business founded by his grandfather Nicolas Sanson in the seventeenth century) and after having purchased, between 1788 and around 1800, the businesses of Jean-Baptiste Fortin (1750-1831) and Jean Lattré (around 1750-1800), he began to call himself “Successeur de MM. Sanson and Robert de Vaugondi, Géographes du Roi and de M. Fortin, Ingénieur-mécanicien du Roi pour les globes et les sphères”.
Thus, at the end of the eighteenth century, Delamarche possessed the warehouse stocks, as well as the manufacturing skills of the globes of his main rivals in Paris.
In addition to this aggressive acquisition policy, the key to his success also lay in the combination of high-quality cartography combined with extremely attractive globes and armillary spheres; and, of course, its famous red paint finishing touch.
His laboratory was located in Rue de Foin St Jacques “au Collège Me. (or “Mtre”) Gervais” in the Latin Quarter of Paris until around 1805, when he moved to rue du Jardinet n. 13.
On the death of Charles-François in 1817, the reins of the company passed to his son Félix (1779-1835), who continued to publish, often in collaboration with the engraver Charles Dien, Senior. In 1835 the company first moved to rue du Jardinet n. 12 and a little later to rue du Battoir n. 7.
- Van der Krogt P., Old Globes in the Netherlands, Utrecht 1984, pp. 98-99;
- Van der Krogt P. e Dekker E., Globes from the Western World, London 1993, p. 78;
- Dekker E., et al., Globes at Greenwich: A Catalogue of the Globes and Armillary Spheres in the National Maritime Museum, Greenwich, London, 1999, pp. 321-322 per la storia dell’impresa dei Delamarche.
- Dekker E., Catalogue of Orbs, Spheres and Globes, Firenze-Milano 2004. Vi sono elencati e descritti i globi e le sfere custoditi nel Museo Galileo di Firenze; a pp. 164-166 n. 51-52 (inv. n. 3705 e n. 3369) è pubblicata una coppia di globi, il terrestre e il celeste, di Félix Delamarche più grandi del nostro, ma con lo stesso anno, 1821, di pubblicazione.