Certain Astrological and Astronomical Figures
Manuscript Item Type Metadata
Assembled c. 1861 (fol. 1r), this compilation of three earlier manuscripts testifies to both the diverse practical applications of medieval astronomy and the nineteenth-century interest in collecting medieval illustrations. The first three leaves are drawn from an early fifteenth-century English manuscript, and include a blank horoscope template, a zodiac calendar, and these two Kabbalistic diagrams. This text also contains a Latin inscription that sheds light on its own production, including the price for a manuscript of twenty-five gatherings (“bought from Master Richard Chamberlain for 16 shillings and 8 pence”). The next leaf comes from a different manuscript, and includes diagrams of the celestial spheres and elemental spheres. The last leaf, from a Spanish manuscript, demonstrates how to write astronomically large numbers in Arabic numerals. A drawing of a labyrinth, with an English real estate transaction on the reverse, is inserted at the back.
UPenn LJS 226
Place of Origin
England and Spain
Number of Leaves
170 x 130 mm
19th-century quarter-marbled paper over cardboard
Provenance (Ownership History)
Richard Chamberlain; Johannes Lethe; Sir John Chetwode of Oakley Hall, Staffordshire; Lawrence J. Schoenberg.
Crofton Black, ed., Transformation of Knowledge: Early Manuscripts from the Collection of Lawrence J. Schoenberg (London: Paul Holberton, 2006), 69.
“Certain Astrological and Astronomical Figures,” Scanning the Skies: A Virtual Exhibit of Astronomy Manuscripts at the University of Pennsylvania, accessed February 27, 2024, https://aylinmalcolm.com/astro/items/show/22.