De le Stelle Fisse, title page
AuthorPiccolomini, Alessandro, 1508-1578
Page image from bound volume which has the following bibliographic description: 6 preliminary leaves, 252 pages including diagrams ; 21 cm
Piccolomini produced the first star atlas for the general reader. This early edition marks an important develop in the form in which celestial knowledge was conveyed. The work introduced the system of stellar nomenclature, which with the modification subsequently made by Bayer, remains in use today. Stars are identified by lower case letters for a given constellation, with tables conveniently listing magnitudes from first to fourth. The work proved wildly popular, with twelve editions in Italian and Latin within the 16th century. The De le Stelle Fisse is the companion volume to La Sfera del Mondo containing maps of the different star patterns.
Astronomy--Early works to 1800