The sphere is 77 mm. diameter and made of papier-mache with a plaster coating and 12 copper engraved printed paper gores running from north to south poles affixed, hand-coloured and varnished by the publisher. The sphere is mounted in a graduated brass meridian ring numbered every 10 degrees, each 1 degree marked. A brass English type hour circle sits at the North Pole between the sphere and the meridian ring, it is numbered I-XII twice in roman with 15 minute divisions. The meridian ring fits into two slots in a paper horizon ring affixed to the lower part of the case. The case consists of two concave wooden hemispheres made of wood and painted black, joined at the equator by a brass hinge, there are two brass hook-and-eye fastenings, one missing. The upper hemisphere bears 12 gores printed with astronomical phenomena. The rim bears a zodiacal scale with the names of the zodiac and a Gregorian calendar numbered every 10 days and the last day of each month. Displayed immediately above is the Milky Way. In the centre is an image of the sun surrounded by the known planets including Uranus. The lower hemisphere bears a wooden support for the brass meridian ring to sit in. The paper horizon ring is copper engraved, hand coloured and varnished with scales from the inside out for ‘Amplitude’ and Azimuth numbered every 10 degrees each degree marked, and for 32 compass points with abbreviated names in English. Affixed to the lower hemisphere is a brass ring which enables a small (later?) table stand to be screw fixed. In good condition.
John Newton (1759-1844) learnt the art of globe making from the engraver Thomas Bateman (c.1731-81) who had continued the business of his master Nathaniel Hill after his death in 1768. Following Bateman’s own death in 1781 the business was continued by Newton in partnership with the globe maker William Palmer. This relationship did not last long and Newton continued as a sole trader. In about 1814 he was joined by his son William Newton (1786-1861) and from 1830 by Miles Berry (1803?-43).
Newton’s first pocket globe was a revision of that first published by Nathaniel Hill in 1754 and issued in partnership with Palmer in 1783. The study of globes although in some respects is extensive is very poor in identifying issues and states. This particular pocket globe appears to have been first published under the title ‘Newton’s New & Improved Terrestrial Pocket Globe’ in 1817. This appears to be an example of the third state dated to after 1833 with the imprint altered to Newton & Son.
What makes this globe different from the earlier eighteenth century globes is the presence of meridian and horizon rings. Previously these had been reserved for larger table globes. The terrestrial globe depicts the ‘Antipodes of London’ and ‘Owyhee/ Capt. Cook killed 1779’. The tracks of Cook’s second and third voyages along with that of Clark & Gore in 1779 are displayed. The addition of the route of Captain John Biscoe’s (1794-1843) voyage of exploration of the Antarctic in 1830-33. For his services to geography he was awarded the Gold Medal by the Royal Geographical Society in 1833. What is interesting about the concave celestial sphere is the presence of the recently discovered Uranus here labelled ‘Herschal’ which is displayed with 6 moons. Herschal had made the discovery in 1781. Provenance: private English collection for 30 years. Dekker, Elly (1999). Globes at Greenwich p. 427 GLB0015; Krogt, Peter van der. (1984). Old Globes in the Netherlands New 1; Worms & Baynton-Williams (2011).