John of Sacrobosco, De Sphaera Mundi (Venice, 1490)

John of Sacrobosco, De Sphaera Mundi (Venice, 1490)
Winchester College Collections

John of Sacrobosco, an English astronomer, wrote this explanation of the spherical geography of astronomical movement in the 1230s. The text remained a standard introduction to astronomy into the sixteenth century. Numerous editions of De Sphaera were printed from 1472 onwards and from this point, it was circulated with new astronomical texts. The displayed page describes optical experiments that demonstrate that the world is round.

A manuscript note and stamps on the title page of this copy show that it was once owned by the Cathedral of St Vincent and St James in Wrocław, before entering the collection of the Staatsbibliothek in Berlin. This book is important as it contains an early example of colour printing, though this only appears in the later texts.