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A MAGNIFICENT PAIR OF GILT-METAL GLOBES, TERRESTRIAL AND CELESTIAL, bearing the Tughra and Latin inscription of Sultan Murad III, diameters 29.6cm, overall height 40cm, overall width 38cm, unsigned
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A MAGNIFICENT PAIR OF GILT-METAL GLOBES, TERRESTRIAL AND CELESTIAL, bearing the Tughra and Latin inscription of Sultan Murad III, diameters 29.6cm, overall height 40cm, overall width 38cm, unsigned [attributed to the workshop of Gerard Mercator at Duisburg], dated 1579\n\nTHE TERRESTRIAL GLOBE\n\nThe globe is made of two gilded copper hemispheres, joined at the equator by brass counter-sunk head screws, elaborately engraved with an image of the world, coastlines shown by single lines with hachure edges, rivers by single or double lines with hachure infill, continents and place names engraved in roman capitals or fine italic script according to importance, towns marked by small circles, 60 towns in Europe marked by numeral codes, with a key set in central Pacific, major mountain chains marked by stylised shaded hill symbols, the continents decorated with 13 animals and beasts: Africa with two elephants,a rhino, lion, giraffe, a dragon, and an image of Prester John sitting on his throne: South America with 2 wolf-like beasts, one suckling its young, and 2 natives, one with a bow: the Antarctic continent decorated with an eagle and a hawk-like bird, the seas and oceans profusely stippled, decorated with a sea monster, Triton riding his sea-horse, a galley in the Indian Ocean and a European ship, major ocean names in large decorated italics, smaller inland seas in roman capitals, the cartouche placed in the lower Indian Ocean reads 'AMVRATHES TERTIVS Magni in coelo Dei soly:manus solus omnium regnum mundi rex imperator sultha:nus Turcarum: 1579'; the globe divided by lines of longitude at 15° intervals, and lines of latitude at 10° intervals, the prime meridian running through the Cape Verde Islands, the prime meridian, equator and ecliptic circle divided into 1° intervals alternately shaded, the prime meridian and ecliptic circle numbered every 10°, the equator every 5° where feasible, the ecliptic divided into the 12 signs of the zodiac and marked with their symbols, the polar circles and tropics of Capricorn and Cancer shown by double-rule lines, the positions of 2 magnetic poles are shown north of the Bering straits, the globe further engraved with the positions of 46 stars each with their latin names, some with their vulgarized arabic names, the majority positioned North of 50°N, the stars ordered on a magnitude scale of 1-4 (scale drawn on the Tropic of Capricorn below New Guinea), the continents and the seas decorated with 15 descriptive legends for areas in the far southern and northern latitudes (see Table 1). One screw is missing at the equator.\n\nSOURCES\n\nTHE TERRESTRIAL GLOBE IS MODELLED ON GERARD MERCATOR'S PRINTED GLOBE OF 1541, incorporating directly the depiction of the lupus in South America, starnames, magnetic poles and the use of a numerical index for the European towns (the 1541 globe also has 60 names and the key in the Pacific Ocean). The inclusion of the magnetic poles is particularly Mercatorian and rarely seen on other globes from this period. The form of adding stars to a terrestrial globe is typically Flemish, and was used by Gemma Frisius on his terrestrial globe of 1537, and followed by Mercator on his 1541 globe. Few other makers adopted this feature. Of the 46 stars depicted all but one (Flumen/Angetenar) are shown on the Mercator globe of 1541. the Latin names for these stars derive from Mercator, although 9 stars have additional arabic names.\nTHE CARTOGRAPHIC IMAGE IS TAKEN DIRECTLY FROM THE 1569 WORLD MAP OF GERARD MERCATOR published on 21 sheets in Duisburg, typical features being the depiction of the North and South Polar regions, the Ganges, the river Amazon, the distortion of the South American continent, the drawing of Triton and Prester John, the form and positioning of most of the place names, while, of the 15 legends on this globe 14 are in almost identical form to the 1569 world map (see Table 1).\nTHE ONE LEGEND NOT IDENTICAL TO THE 1569 WORLD MAP IS FIRST FOUND ON RUMOLD MERCATOR'S WORLD MAP OF 1587. This legend for the area of 'beach' in Australia reads 'Maletur regnum scatens aromatibus'. Rumold's world map was first published in Isaac Casaubon's edition of Strabo's Geographia printed in Geneva in 1587, and later incorporated into his editions of the Mercator atlas from 1595.\n\nTHE CELESTIAL GLOBE\n\nThe globe is made of two gilded copper hemispheres, joined at the equator by brass counter-sunk head screws, elaborately engraved with the positions of more than a 1000 stars, in 7 magnitudes (index table of magnitudes engraved in front of Ursa Major), 39 stars named individually in roman and italic script, the stars embellished by the engraving of 50 elaborately detailed constellation figures, many in roman dress, the tughra (arabic cipher) of Murad III engraved near the celestial south pole, the globe divided by meridians and celestial latitudes at 30° intervals (defining tropics of Cancer, Capricorn, arctic and antarctic circles), the celestial equator and plane of the ecliptic divided into 1° intervals, alternate degrees shaded, both numbered where feasible every 10°, the ecliptic divided into the 12 signs of the zodiac and marked by their symbols, northern and southern ecliptic poles indicated by small circles.\n\nSOURCES\n\nTHE CELESTIAL GLOBE IS DIRECTLY DERIVED FROM GERARD MERCATOR'S PRINTED CELESTIAL GLOBE OF 1551. The constellation figures are identical and have been carefully reproduced incorporating all of Mercator's novelties in style and the forms of Roman dress, i.e. the dress of Andromeda, Argo and Cetus. This style of constellation figures was introduced by Mercator on his 1551 globe and was followed by many other 16th century globemakers, such as Jost Burgi's celestial globe and Diegel's silver celeatial globe of c.1567, none have reproduced so literally the forms as are engraved on this globe. Some small alterations and additions have been introduced to the names of the constellations (e.g Gallina instead of Avis for the constellation of Cygnus, and Canis syrius added to Canis Maior). Similarly, most star names agree with those on the 1551 globe, although on the latter globe the star names are both more elaborate and extensive, with several names given for some stars and many more stars named.\nTHE STELLAR POSITIONS ARE TAKEN FROM JOHANNES SCHÖNER'S OPERA MATHEMATICA, which was published posthumusly in 1551 and 1561. Schöner's star catalogue, included in his Globo stelliferi sive sphaerae stellatum fixarum usus, ex explicationes in the section Coelestis globi compositio, is an adaptation of the star list published in 1543 by Nicolaus Copernicus in his De Revolutionibus for the epoch 1551. The adaptation is based on the Copernican trepidation theory for precession, a theory also applied by Mercator on his globe of 1551. The data on this globe shows the same excess in longitude with respect to Ptolemaic longitudes as that depicted on the 1551 globe by Mercator. However as a result of using Schöner's version of Copernicus's star list, a few of the star positions on this globe do not agree with those on Mercator's (such as several stars in Ursa Maioris, Pegasus and Scorpius). The use of Schöner's star catalogue also accounts for various minor changes of spelling between this and Mercator's globe i.e Ascher Aliemani instead of Asceher Alhabor. It is also interesting to note that despite the use of Schöner's catalogue, two notorious erroneous assignments taken from Mercator's globe are reproduced here: Dubhe for & UMa instead of @ UMa and Rasalgeuse for b gem instead of @ Gem. This type of error compounding Copernican errors suggests that for the maker of this globe, like Copernicus and Mercator, thought that the form of the celestial heavens was a matter to be decided by mathematical computation rather than observation.\n(A full list of star and constellation names and an analysis of star positions is available on request)\n\nTHE STANDS\n\nEach globe is set on a central brass axis, with a gilded brass meridian circle pinned at the north and south poles, the outer diameter of the meridian circle 32cm, width 1.3cm, one face engraved at 1° intervals, shaded alternately, numbered every 10°, from North Pole 90-0-90/0-90-0, the verso decorated with guilloche pattern, in each case matching the base, for the terrestrial a guilloche in the Greek style, for the celestial a guilloche with arcading, the meridian circles slot into the stand through cuts in the horizon circle to rest on a central column rising from the base, the slots cut into the horizon circle are between the 9/11 December (on the celestial) and 11/13 December (on the terrestrial): silver inlaid circles (51mm diameter) are fixed onto the meridian circle fitting into small cuts at the North pole of each circle secured by two screws, the silver scale divided into 12 divisions and marked by Roman capitals I-XII, with stars between each. (The division pointers and one screw for the meridian circle are missing.)\nThe spheres fit into gilded brass stands, each made up of a horizon circle, the engraving of which varies according to its terrestrial or celestial use, the horizon circles supported by four Doric columns resting on a four sided pedestal, each side with a low rectangular pyramid applied over a silver rectangle, echoing the silver inlaid circles, each column 20cm high, descending to a base elaborately engraved with arabesques around the central column and outer edges, the bases secured to the columns by four bulbous feet, each decorated with companion guilloche designs to the meridian circles and bases, with a further undecorated supporting foot screwed into the central column.\nHORIZON CIRCLES\nThe horizon circles are engraved differently for each globe, the diameter of each being 37.4cm, width 3.3cm. For the terrestrial globe the divisions of the horizon circle are laid out as follows:\nAt the outermost edge, the 32 points of the compass are labelled in Flemish, with the four cardinal points (North,South, East and West) labelled in Latin: The second band is marked out into the days of the months, labelled in Latin, with Saints days indicated: The next band contains the names and signs of the zodiac: and the innermost band is divided into 360 degrees, the alternate degrees shaded, lettered every 10°.\nFor the Celestial the circle is almost identical except that the outermost ring shows only the cardinal compass points, in Latin, and between these are labelled the attributes associated with the directions, such as between Occidens and Merides "Pars meridiana, feminina, recedens,aestivalis, chloerica, significat mediam etatem".\n\nSOURCES\n\nTHE CONSTRUCTION OF THE STANDS IS MODELLED ON THE 'DUTCH STYLE', popular in the low countries from the 16th Century onwards. The patterns for the columns may have been derived from Augsburg pattern books, while the guilloche decoration and arabesque decoration for the base and around the tughra are commonly found on decoration for instruments,maps, bindings and books of the late 16th century.\nTHE HORIZON CIRCLES ARE COPIED FROM GERARD MERCATOR'S GLOBES OF 1541 AND 1551, although due to lack of space the outer ring has been compressed and the ring with the Latin names for the mariners compass omitted. On the calendar ring of both circles there are 12 additional Saints names (see Table 2). In addition the calender rings of these globes differ from the Mercator 1541 and 1551 forms in that the calends, nones and ides of each month have been replaced by numerals (see illustration).\n\nTHE ENGRAVING AND LETTERING\n\nThere are several key points in the engraving of these globes which indicate that they were made by a craftsman or craftsmen as a pair of globes over a short time period. The lettering on the terrestrial globe used for the towns and regions strongly resembles that used for the zodiac, calendar scales, and lists of saints days on the horizon circles. The style and engraving of the equators, ecliptic and zodiac signs on both spheres are in companion forms, as is also the case for the two meridian circles. The style and form of engraving and lettering of the two horizon circles are identical and appear to have been carried out by same hand.\nThe letter forms used on the globes are those established by Mercator. For the numbers, a simple aid has been employed to speed up the task of labelling. On the horizon circles, the numbering of the days of the months employs a small zero punch for the use of 0,6,9, and in double form 8. In the Zodiac band a larger zero punch has been used. These same zero punches have been used for the numbering of the meridian circles and the terrestrial sphere; connecting both horizon circles,meridian circles and terrestrial numbering to the same tools. On the celestial globe the zeros are engraved and the 1 has rotational symmetry. It is clear, however, that on the Mercator gores of 1551 the numbers used to label the degrees on the Equinoctial and Zodiacal circles are not exactly the same as those on Mercator's terrestrial globe of 1541, which are known to be from the hand of Gerard Mercator, nor are these numbers the same as those on the present globes. Differences can be seen in the 1's and 3's, but on both horizon circles of the 1541 and 1551 globes the zeros are punched (see illustrations), the punch closely resembling the punch used on several parts of these globes. It is interesting to note that on the inscription on the terrestrial globe the capital letters in the first two lines are not strictly in line. The date 1579, has a 1 with a top and tail in rotational symmetry, whereas all others have a cross stroke at the tail. Perhaps the wording of the cartouche was not engraved at the same time as the remaineder of the globe. Could this have been the manufacture of a metal globe with a blank cartouche?\n\nGERARD MERCATOR (1512-1594)\n\nGERARD MERCATOR, THE GREATEST CARTOGRAPHER OF THE 16TH CENTURY, WAS BORN ON THE 5TH MARCH 1512 IN RUPELMONDE, NEAR ANTWERP. HIS PARENTS, BOTH FROM JULICH, WERE LIVING IN RUPELMONDE WITH HIS UNCLE GISBERT AT THE TIME. THEY DIED WHEN HE WAS YOUNG AND HIS RICH UNCLE GISBERT TOOK OVER THE TASK OF EDUCATING YOUNG GERARD; FIRST AT 'S HERTOGENBOSCH, WHERE HE STUDIED CHRISTIAN DOCTRINE AND LATIN, AND LATER AT THE UNIVERSITY OF LOUVAIN WHERE HE TOOK THE HUMANITIES AND PHILOSOPHY. HE WENT ON TO STUDY MATHEMATICS AND ASTROLOGY UNDER THE GREAT MATHEMATICIAN GEMMA FRISIUS (1508-55). AFTER OBTAINING A DEGREE IN 1532 HE JOINED GEMMA FRISIUS AT THE WORKSHOP OF VAN DER HEYDEN IN LOUVAIN WHERE A GROUP OF INSTRUMENT MAKERS INCLUDING GASPAR A MIRICA, AND LATER GEMMA'S NEPHEW GUALTERIUS ARSENIUS, HAD GATHERED. HERE HE BECAME ACQUAINTED WITH THE CONSTRUCTION OF SCIENTIFIC INSTRUMENTS AND ENGRAVING, ASSISTING ON GEMMA'S GLOBES OF 1535 AND 1537, AND LATER PRODUCING HIS OWN TERRESTRIAL GLOBE IN 1541 AND CELESTIAL GLOBE IN 1551. DURING THESE FORMATIVE YEARS UNDER GEMMA FRISIUS'S GUIDANCE, HE ASSIMILATED THE SCIENTIFIC KNOWLEDGE THAT WAS TO BE THE BASIS OF HIS NEW IDEAS IN CARTOGRAPHY. HE PIONEERED THE ADOPTION OF ITALIC SCRIPT ON INSTRUMENTS AND MAPS, PUBLISHING HIS TREATISE ON THE SUBJECT IN 1540. IN 1534 HE MARRIED BARBARA SCHELLEKENS AND HIS FIRST SON ARNOLD WAS BORN IN 1537. IN HIS WORK HE RAPIDLY MOVED AWAY FROM THE PURE SCIENTIFIC INSTRUMENT MAKING TO SURVEYING AND MAPMAKING, DRAWING HIS FIRST MAP OF PALESTINE IN 1537,A WORLD MAP 1538 AND A SURVEY OF FLANDERS IN 1540. NEVERTHELESS IN THE EARLY 1540'S HE MADE A SET OF 5 INSTRUMENTS (AN ASTROLABE, ARMILLARY SPHERE, ASTRONOMICAL RING, COMPASS AND QUADRANT) FOR THE HOLY ROMAN EMPEROR CHARLES V, WHICH WERE DESTROYED IN A BARN AT THE BATTLE OF INGOLSTADT IN 1545, BUT SUBSEQUENTLY REPLACED BY MERCATOR.\nIN 1544 HE WAS ARRESTED IN THE PROVINCE OF WAAS, TAKEN TO RUPELMONDE AND CHARGED WITH HERESY, ALONG WITH 43 OTHERS FROM LOUVAIN. THE AUTHORITIES OF LOUVAIN SUPPORTED HIM FULLY AND HE WAS RELEASED. HOWEVER IN 1552 HE DECIDED TO MOVE TO DUISBURG IN THE DUCHY OF CLEVES, A MORE TOLERANT CITY, ALSO ENTICED BY AN OFFER OF AN APPOINTMENT AS COURT COSMOGRAPHER TO THE DUCHY OF CLEVES. HIS REPUTATION AS A CARTOGRAPHER HAD SPREAD THROUGHOUT EUROPE, AND HE CORRESPONDED WITH MANY KINGS, STATESMAN AND SCHOLARS OF HIS DAY. IN 1552 HE CONSTRUCTED FOR CHARLES V A GLASS CELESTIAL GLOBE, THE CONSTELLATION FIGURES ENGRAVED ON THE GLASS AND THE LINES FILLED IN GOLD, AS WELL AS A MINIATURE TERRESTRIAL GLOBE IN WOOD, WHICH WERE PRESENTED TO THE EMPEROR AT BRUSSELS. HIS WORK ON MAPS CONTINUED APACE, A MAP OF EUROPE 1554, LOUVAIN AND THE BRITISH ISLES IN 1564, DEVISING HIS FAMOUS CYLINDRICAL PROJECTION WHICH CULMINATED IN HIS MAGNIFICENT 21-SHEET MAP OF THE WORLD PUBLISHED IN 1569. IT IS ARGUED BY A.S.OSLEY AND OTHERS THAT MUCH OF THE ENGRAVING ON HIS MAPS UP TO 1570 WAS CARRIED OUT BY MERCATOR HIMSELF. HOWEVER FOLLOWING THIS DATE, AS A RESULT OF HIS FAILING EYESIGHT, THE MAJORITY OF THIS CLOSE WORK WAS CARRIED OUT BY HIS SONS ARNOLD AND RUMOLD, AND BY OUTSIDE CRAFTSMEN. IT IS IN THIS PERIOD, POSSIBLY THROUGH THE INFLUENCE OF ARNOLD, THAT MERCATOR SEEMS TO HAVE INCREASED THE PRODUCTION OF HIS 1541 AND 1551 GLOBES. RECORDS FOR PLANTIN'S SHOP IN ANTWERP SHOW THAT HE BOUGHT 18 PAIRS OF GLOBES FROM MERCATOR FROM 1566-76 (AND SOLD 16, 10 TO THE LOW COUNTRIES, 1 TO ENGLAND, 3 TO SPAIN AND 2 TO FRANCE). SIMILARLY MERCATOR'S CORRESPONDENCE WITH DR JOACHIM CAMERARIUS OF NUREMBERG SHOWS ORDERS FOR 6 PAIRS OF GLOBES BETWEEN 1574-8, WHICH WERE DELIVERED FOR SALE AT THE FRANKFURT BOOKFAIR. IN A LETTER OF JANUARY 1584 MERCATOR WRITES THAT HE HAS STARTED MAKING SEVERAL NEW GLOBES AS ALL THOSE MADE THE PREVIOUS YEAR HAD BEEN SOLD. IN FACT MERCATOR'S PRODUCTION'S MAY BE CLASSIFIED AS THE FIRST MASS PRODUCES GLOBES IN EUROPE, AND BECAME THE STANDARD FOR THE 16TH CENTURY. (2)
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notes

AFTER THE PUBLICATION OF HIS WORLD-MAP IN 1569, MERCATOR CONTINUED HIS PLANS FOR THE PUBLISHING OF HIS ATLAS; HIS CHRONOLOGY WAS ISSUED IN 1569, THE EDITION OF PTOLEMY'S GEOGRAPHIA IN 1578 AND THE SECOND PART OF THE ATLAS IN 1585, MUCH OF THE ENGRAVING BEING CARRIED OUT BY ARNOLD, WHO DIED OF PLEURESY IN 1587, AND THEN BY RUMOLD, WHO HAD BEEN SENT TO TRAIN WITH ORTELIUS IN ANTWERP AND LATER ACTED AS AGENT FOR THE BOOKSELLER BIRCKMAN IN COLOGNE.

ARNOLD HAD BEEN TRAINED BY MERCATOR HIMSELF IN THE ART OF INSTRUMENT MAKING, SURVEYING AND ENGRAVING, AND FROM 1564 WAS ENTRUSTED BY MERCATOR WITH ALL THE SURVEYING OF TRIER, KATZENELLENBOGEN, AND MOST OF HESSE. WALTER GHIM, MAYOR OF DUISBURG AND MERCATOR'S FRIEND, IN HIS VITA MERCATORIS, PUBLISHED IN THE 1595 EDITION OF THE ATLAS, DOCUMENTS THE LIFE OF MERCATOR, BUT ALSO GIVES GENEROUS PRAISE TO ARNOLD: 'IN A FEW YEARS ARNOLD HAD MADE SUCH PROGRESS WITH THESE STUDIES THAT HE WAS ALMOST UNRIVALLED IN CONSTRUCTING ACCURATE AND BEAUTIFUL MATHEMATICAL INSTRUMENTS, WHICH HE MADE FOR SOME OF THE MOST IMPORTANT DIGNITARIES IN GERMANY. HE HAD HARDLY AN EQUAL IN HIS SKILL IN GEOGRAPHY AND SURVEYING'. HIS SONS JACOB AND MICHAEL BOTH FOLLOWED HIS TRADE; JACOB IN AN UNDATED LETTER OF AROUND 1592 SENT A METAL GLOBE TO THE LANDGRAVE OF KASSEL, WHILE MICHAEL IS KNOWN FOR HIS ENGRAVING OF A WORLD MAP DATED 1589 ON A SILVER PLAQUE IN COMMEMORATION OF DRAKE'S VOYAGE.

MERCATOR'S WIFE DIED IN 1586, AND HE HIMSELF WAS PARALYSED BY A STROKE IN 1590, AND DIED IN 1594 OF A CEREBRAL HAEMORRHAGE. HIS FRIEND ABRAHAM ORTELIUS DESCRIBED MERCATOR AS THE PTOLEMY OF HIS AGE; HIS ACHIEVEMENTS SET CARTOGRAPHY FORWARD INTO THE 17TH CENTURY. AFTER HIS FATHER'S DEATH RUMOLD TOOK OVER THE BUSINESS PUBLISHING A NEW EDITION OF THE ATLAS IN 1595. HE DIED IN 1599, AND THE ORIGINAL COPPERPLATES FOR THE MAPS WERE PURCHASED BY JODOCUS HONDIUS OF AMSTERDAM.

THE CLOSE SIMILARITY OF THIS PAIR OF GLOBES TO MERCATOR'S GLOBES OF 1541 AND 1551, ALLIED WITH THE USE OF INFORMATION FROM THE MERCATOR WORLD MAP OF 1569 LEADS US TO BELIEVE THAT THEY WERE CONSTRUCTED BY CRAFTSMAN OR CRAFTSMEN CLOSE TO MERCATOR, FAMILIAR WITH THE CONCEPTS OF HIS PROJECTION. THE SIGNIFICANT FACT THAT ONE OF THE LEGENDS IS ONLY FOUND ON A MAP BY RUMOLD MERCATOR PUBLISHED IN 1587, INDICATES THAT RUMOLD MUST HAVE HAVE KNOWLEDGE OF OR ACCESS TO NOTES FOR THE GLOBES CONSTRUCTION; THESE NOTES DERIVING FROM MERCATOR'S OWN WORKSHOP AT DUISBURG. WE THEREFORE ATTRIBUTE THESE GLOBES TO MERCATOR'S WORKSHOP.

THE SCIENTIFIC INTERESTS OF SULTAN MURAD III (1546-15 )

Sultan Murad III, grandson of Suleiman the Magnificent, succeeded to the Ottoman sultanate on the death of his father, Selim II, in 1574, at the age of 28. His mother, Nur Banu Sultan, the favourite consort of Selim II, was of Venetian birth; she was captured when she was 12 by the Turkish corsair Hayreddin, known as Barbarossa, and joined the Harem. Soon after his accession, apparently encouraged by his hodja (teacher), he agreed to establish an observatory in the European sector of Istanbul at Tophane; building work was completed in 1577, and observations began the same year. The complex comprised a building for accomodation and offices, and another known as the small observatory, to house the portable instruments. The larger instruments were probably placed in the open, the outstanding object being the gigantic armillary sphere. A team of 16 staff was headed by the director Taqi al-Din, the Syrian-born astronomer from Cairo, and another astronomer, a Jew from Salonica. The Observatory was soon equipped with the finest instruments, as a contemporary Ottoman miniature depicts, showing a room with quadrants,astrolabe, clepsidras, a European clock, and in the foreground a large European style terrestrial globe, reflecting Taqi al-Din's own interest in cartography. An account by Salomon Schweygger, who visited Istanbul between 1578 and 1581, specifically states that the observatory was equipped with a pair of globes, but these were much larger than the present pair, described as being an ell in height (about 5 feet).

The establishment of this observatory gives an insight into why a pair of European globes might be required at this particular time by Murad III.

THE ACQUISITION OF EUROPEAN OBJECTS BY THE OTTOMAN COURT

There were three principal ways in which the Sultan and his Court acquired European objects in the 1570's. One was, of course, by diplomatic gift, which might be enforced or voluntary, the most obvious case of the former being the annual tribute or honoraria given by the Habsburg Court from 1547 to 1606 as part of the settlement of the Austro-Turkish War. Through this settlement the Ottomans extracted an annual tribute of 30,000 ducats, described by the Habsburgs as 'presents' (Türkenverehrung). The agreement stipulated that part of this tribute be paid in clocks. The 'presents' generally comprised gold and silver vessels, usually goblets to hold specie, and clocks and automata. For the production of clocks and other mechanical frivolities the Courts in Vienna and Prague had a well organised system of manufacture of such goods from Augsburg and Nuremberg makers, sometimes even completing designs of clocks supplied by the Ottoman Court. Other satellite states such as Transylvania, the Ragusans, Wallachians and Poland also provided tribute to the Ottoman Court, but at much lower levels e.g. 5000 ducats from Transylvania, while the Venetians as a matter of course gave gifts to placate and strengthen their trading relationship with their powerful ally. For them the gifts tended to be decorative, silks and wall hangings, mirrors and other quality Italian goods.

European powers further away from the Ottoman sphere of influence used gifts as a essential part of diplomacy to the Sublime Porte, to maintain or establish valuable trading agreements. In 1579, for example, the French ambassador, de Germigny, presented the Sultan with 'un fort beau et grand horloge sonnant et monstrant tous les signes du ciel'; the English too were were in the process of negotiating capitulations, and an English embassy was established in 1582, accompanied by the gift of a coach. The Spanish had agreed a cessation of hostilities with the Ottomans in 1577 and an armistice was concluded in 1578. Philip's agent in Istanbul, Giovanni Margliani was given an ambassadorial licence and a present for the Sultan in September 1579; what form this present took is not revealed.

Another process by which European items came to the Court is a variant of the diplomatic gift system whereby the Ottoman Court let ambassadors, resident in Istanbul, know what gifts they required even to the point of providing descriptions and drawings. The central figure in many of these requests was Sokollu Mehmed Pasha, who was Grand Vizier between 1565 and 1579 (when he was assasinated). In 1567 he requested a clock from the Austrians and Italian style glass lamps from the Venetians. In 1573 he asked the Austrians for a clock and in 1576 requested two types of spherical clocks providing drawings and instructions, which still survive in the archives at Vienna. Requests in 1578 included textiles, portraits of Sultans, saddle-cloths and bows from Venice. In 1579 the Sultan asked de Germigny to send a drawing of a spherical clock to Henri III. Other viziers also put pressure on the European ambassadors at Court with their own requests. Certainly the benefits and costs of playing the game by these methods must have been recuperated by trade gained.

Presents also arrived unsolicited from non governmental sources, scholars or entrepreneurs. An early example occured when Francesco Berlinghieri sent a copy of his translation of Ptolemy's Geographia to the Sultan in 1481, or the costly four-tiered crown made in Venice for Süleyman the Magnificent in the 1530's. Equally in 1559 the 'Map of Hajji Ahmed', a woodcut cordiform world map with lengthy inscriptions in Turkish was made for the Turkish market and printed in Venice.

A final source of European objects were the merchants specially sent out to acquire items abroad. Records of their missions occasionally survive, but it is rare to know what they were being sent to purchase. An exception to this, and especially interesting in the context of these globes, is Gabriel Defrens, a young multi-lingual dragoman, probably of Burgundian origins, who was employed by the Odabashi, the sultan's personal attendant at Topkaki Palace, as well as by the French embassy in Istanbul. In 1580 the Austrian ambassador von Sinzendorff wrote to Rudolf warning him that Defrens, who was 'French or rather Netherlandish', and about 14 or 15 years old, had just left Istanbul for Europe, travelling to Ragusa, Venice, and thence to Augsburg and Nuremberg. His real purpose was espionage, and von Sinzendorff judged him' an agent most dangerous for Christendom'. As for his ostensible mission, 'he just recently had it made known and recognized that he would buy clocks and suchlike instruments there [Augsburg and Nuremberg] and finally travel towards England where would be seen by the Court. The report is dated 17 September 1580, but von Sinzendorff makes it clear that Defrens had made the journey before and was well acquainted with the roads. It seems he had made a previous journey to England in 1579, probably to encourage the English in their approach to the Ottoman Court.

THE TUGHRA AND THE LATIN INSCRIPTION

The key features which indicate the possible explanation for the construction and origins of these globes are the forms of the arabic Tughra and the Latin inscription. On one level the two dedicatory cartouches are complimentary, one in an Ottoman form the other a European form; but closer inspection reveals anomalies. The Ottoman tughra was the Sultan's own cipher that was used to confirm the legality of documents. It was also used to mark works of art, though no other object of the 15th and 16th century, apart from written documents, is known that features such a prominent and elaborate version of the tughra. The tughra on the globe is a remarkably accurate rendering of Murad's tughra, it contains all the literal elements, preserves the proportions and even the flourish of the Ottoman original. The one European element is the arabesques, which in their form imitate the triangular crest of a typical Ottoman model of Murad's reign (see illustration). Apart from the arabesques the tughra is a near perfect rendering of a prototype that had originated in the Ottoman chancery. The quality of the Ottoman tughra is in direct contrast to the European inscription. This lacks the stamp of Chancery approval, its phraseology is hybrid, it is terse and lacks the standard protocols. The crucial question is where and by whom the Latin dedication was composed. The poor form of the Latin, the lack of ingratiating titles argue that the inscription was probably not prepared by an imperial secretariat either in Europe or Istanbul, i.e. that it was not a gift from established tribute countries, who would know better than this. Research in the archives of Venice, the Habsburg archives in Vienna shows no mention of globes in gift or tribute list for this period. The English gifts were not made until the next decade, while the Spanish would be unlikely not to have recorded a gift of this stature. The French were certainly not prepared to spend enormous amounts on regular gifts given that in 1579 Henri III complained that he could not afford a turban watch for the heir-apparent, Prince Mehmed. A private gift from rich merchants cannot be ruled out, but where would they have found a Tughra to copy. It is possible that Gabriel Defrens


*Note that the price is not recalculated to the current value, but refers to the actual final price at the time the product was sold.

*Note that the price is not recalculated to the current value, but refers to the actual final price at the time the product was sold.


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