Johann Adam Schall von Bell

 Xu Guangqi ( Hs Kuang-ch'i)


Due carte generali delle stelle al nord e al sud dell'equatore, Cina 1634




Johann Adam Schall von Bell

 Xu Guangqi ( Hs Kuang-ch'i)


Due carte generali delle stelle al nord e al sud dell'equatore, Cina 1634



The Double Stellar Hemisphere is a map that was printed from woodblocks in 1634. It depicts the northern and southern hemispheres and consists of 16 coloured star charts, 4 coloured pictures of astronomical instruments and 2 legends. The creation of the map was presided over by Xu Guangqi, a renowned Chinese scholar and bureaucrat, who collaborated with other scholars and with Johann Adam Schall von Bell, a Jesuit German missionary and scholar living in China. The resultant map was a merging of both Chinese and Western astrological knowledge. It is an example of the intellectual interaction that took place between China and the West at that time.

Copies of the map were printed and some of these copies are now in the Vatican Library. The original map was presented to the Chinese Emperor and is more decorative than the copies. The original map is listed in the Qing Imperial Household Map Directory of 1761 but was not known to people outside the Royal Court. The fact it was kept hidden within the Royal Court meant that it was unknown to people in the west and the European copies became
known as The Double Stellar Hemisphere of Johann Adam Schall von Bell. Traditional Chinese star names are used and a Chinese translation of the Western name was used if a traditional name did not exist. The map consists of eight vertical sections and has a total size of approximately 200cm by 452cm. It is printed on Chinese paper, mounted on blue silk and all the constellations are gilded."

Presentazione a cura di

MOWCAP Regional Register




  Per una analisi approfondita della grande carta celeste, cm 452 per 200, di Johann Adam Schall von Bell riporto  i  due seguenti saggi dai quali traggo anche le immagini riportate in questa pagina:


Pasquale M. D'Elia


 in Monumenta Serica. Vol. 18 (1959), pp. 328-359

continua in

Schall d'elia.pdf







The Double Hemisphere Star Atlas (1634): Empiricism, Technical Images, and Cross-Cultural Trust. 2019

continua in

schall yocho.pdf











Il Museo della Specola di Bologna conserva uno dei  pannelli, cm 180 per 60, della grande tavola che viene presentato in questa pagina:



Una copia intera invece esposta nella zona antistante la sala di consultazione periodici della Biblioteca Apostolica  Vaticana nei Musei Vaticani.



Johann Adam Schall Von Bell anche l'autore di Hsi Yang Hsin Fa Li Shu, Pechino 1645, un testo contenente 24 tavole celesti descritte alle pagine 219-221 di

Deborah J. Warner, The Sky explored, Celestial Cartograhy 1500-1800, Pagina 219- 221, New York - Amsterdam 1979






Altre opere relative alla produzione di carte celesti della tradizione cinese possono essere consultate alla seguente pagina: