“The southern Tycho”
By ROYER, Augustin, 1679
Cartes du Ciel réduites en quatre tables, contenant toutes les constellations avec un catalogue des noms, grandeurs & positions des estoilles, corrigées et calculées par longitudes & latitudes pour l’an 1700. En latin, le français à costé.
- Author: ROYER, Augustin
- Publication place: Paris
- Publisher: Jean Baptiste Coignard
- Publication date: 1679.
- Physical description: Duodecimo (140 by 75mm) (36), 223, (1) pp., four engraved folding charts
- Inventory reference: 15217
Petrus Plancius produced the first depiction of the Southern Cross in 1589, and Johann Bayer’s 1603 star atlas included the asterism, but both authors showed it as part of Centaurus rather than a separate constellation.
Most of Royer’s work is occupied by a “Table universelle des longitudes et latitudes des estoilles corrigée et eugmentée par D. Anthelme, Chartreux à Dijon”. Anthelme Voituret was a monk who discovered the CK Vulpeculae, also called the Nova Vulpeculae, in 1670, probably the oldest catalogued nova variable. This nova was not detectable again for centuries until rediscovered in 1981.
“Copies of Royer’s maps are very rare, and they influenced the maps and globes of Coronelli” (Kanas). Examples of Royer’s work are “extremely rare, especially in England. There appears to be no copy of this publication in Oxford, neither do the libraries of the Royal Society or the Royal Astronomical Society possess one. There is a copy in the British Museum. No copies are offered for sale in the catalogues of antiquarian booksellers” (Brown).
The present example has four folding plates. The example formerly in the Macclesfield Library had only three.
We have been able to trace a total of seven institutional examples of the Royer: British Library; NYPL; Linda Hall; BnF, France; Observatoire de Paris, France; Lausanne, Switzerland; Augsburg, Germany.