We spoke once again with renowned map collector David Rumsey. He told us more about the details and history behind our newest MOVA Globe, Cassini Celestial. We also discussed some of the first maps he collected as well as what he’s currently hunting for to add to his collection.
About the Cassini Celestial Globe
MOVA: What is unique about the depiction of the constellations on the Cassini Celestial globe?
David Rumsey: Partly the art. So beautiful the way he’s [Giovanni Maria Cassini] drawn them and colored them. The way this globe works is similar to most globes made at the time. Gods eye view. As if God was outside the whole universe and looking back in and seeing it as a globe. When you look at the Celestial globe you are seeing constellations in reverse from the way you would from the center of the earth. Telescopes from the area show things in reverse. When this globe was put into Google Sky in 2008 they had to reverse it and they were amazed that star positions were amazingly correct. Allowing for the change in time from 1790 to today and the procession of the sky because of the way the Earth rotates, the sky actually shifts. They know how much it shifted between 1792 and today and things lined up perfectly. He definitely had very good information and what was known of the other celestial knowledge of the time.