Title: Coelum stellatum Christianum
Author: Schiller, Julius, d. 1627.
Imprint: Augustae Vindelicorum : Praelo Andreae Apergeri, ... 1627.
Description: , 130 [i.e. 136],  p. (including 52 leaves of plates) : ill., 51 maps ; 32 x 38 cm.
Book location: QB65 .S38 1627 Rare Book Room
Schiller Coelum stellatum Christianum or Christian Starry Heavens, was published in Augsburg in 1627. In this atlas, Schiller attempted to replace all of the pagan constellations with Christian counterparts. The twelve zodiacal constellations, for example, were renamed for the twelve apostles; so that Taurus the Bull, for example, became St. Andrew. Other replacements include The Red Sea for the river Eridanus; the Ark of Noah for the Ship of the Argonauts), and the Sepulcher of Christ for Andromeda.
Schiller’s new system was too radical a change and never caught on, but for astronomers, this atlas had other contributions to make. Twenty-five years after the publication of Uranometria, Schiller worked with Johann Bayer to include corrections and additions to the stars and their positions, producing a more accurate atlas. For example, this is the first star atlas to include the Great Nebula in Andromeda.
The plates in Schiller atlas are slightly smaller than the corresponding plate in Bayer's work, but they are presented in the same order. Opposite each plate is a printed table, where the stars are identified by Arabic numbers, rather than Bayer letters. Schiller also gives two descriptions for each star, one with reference to the original constellation figure and one for the new Christian replacement.
- Adapted from William B. Ashworth, Out of This World: The Golden Age of the Celestial Atlas.
- With additional notes from Morton Wagman's Lost Stars: Lost, Missing, and Troublesome Stars… Blacksburg, Va.: McDonald & Woodward Pub. Co., 2003.