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This beautifully old coloured engraving 'Sphaera Armillaris/Instrumentum artificiale Orrery ad inventore appellatum' by Tobias Conrad Lotter was published in Augsburg in the year 1774. 


This unique and highly ornamental engraving features two astronomical instruments: on the left, there is an armillary sphere depicting the celestial bodies' movements, and on the right, a planetarium constructed in 1712 by the London instrument maker John Rowley for Charles Boyle, the 4th Earl of Orrery, after whom it is named. The planetary machine provides a visual representation of the planets' orbits around the sun. Below the illustration, there is a bilingual description of both devices in Latin and German, providing additional information about their functions and features.


Tobias Lotter, born in 1717 in Germany, pursued a career as a publisher and engraver in Augsburg. He initially worked under Matthäus Seutter as an engraver and eventually married Seutter's daughter. Building on this experience, Lotter established his own successful business and gained recognition as one of the well-known German cartographers of his time. Following his passing in 1777, his son, Matthias Albrecht Lotter, took over the family business, ensuring its continuation.


The condition of this engraving is in excellent condition. 

Spheres - Tobias Conrad Lotter

SKU: 2001
  • Cartographer

    Tobias Conrad Lotter

  • Date



  • Colouring

    Contemporary Coloured

  • Dimensions (cm)

    Image: 48.5 x 57

    Sheet: 55.4 x 65.5

  • Condition


  • Condition Rating


  • Reference Number


  • Authenticity Guaranteed


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