COMMANDINO Federico: Ptolemaei Planisphaerium. Iordani Planisphaerium…, 1588


Ptolemaei Planisphaerium. Iordani Planisphaerium. Federici Commandini Vrbinatis in Ptolemaei Planisphaerium commentarius. In quo uniuersa scenographices ratio quam breuissime traditur, ac demonstrationibus confirmatur.

In 4to, two parts in one volume. Contemporary limp vellum, marked and rubbed. Leaves (1b.), 4, 37; (1), 28. Aldine device to titles and final pages, woodcut diagrams, historiated woodcut initials, first signature a little loose, occasional very light staining to margins.

First edition of Commandino’s important treatise on perspective, together with the first printing of the treatises on stereographic projection of Ptolemy (II century) and Jordanus (XIII century) with Commandino’s commentary. The work discusses the stereographic projection and the celestial south pole. Ptolemy used this for mapping points on the celestial sphere upon the plane of the equator, suggesting that all the circles of the sphere – apart from great circles passing through the poles – are projected upon circles. He did not prove this result, assuming that his readers would know how to derive it from Apollonius’s work. By the 1550s, however, such an assumption was no longer reasonable, and Commandino provided a proof in his commentary. This addendum of the treatises on stereographic projection of Ptolemy and Jordanus also includes his own treatise on perspective which “the first example of an entirely geometrical and rigorous approach to perspective” (Anderson).


Additional information