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Chapter Summary

This introductory chapter provides an overview of the key concepts discussed in this book Observing the World through Images: Diagrams and Figures in the Early-Modern Arts and Sciences, which investigates the roles that visual representations played in promoting new conceptions of the cosmos at a time of revolutionary changes in the way in which the universe was perceived, as well as in the development of astronomical instruments and observational techniques. With acute attention to the importance of place and circumstance, Isabelle Pantin charts for us a map of developments across European cities. Her paper is an apt companion to that by Karin Ekholm, which investigates a single image: Nathaniel Highmore's frontispiece to Corporis humani disquisitio anatomica (1651). The articles of Samuel Gessner, Katie Taylor and Hester Higton deal with images and descriptions of astronomical, navigational and surveying instruments and the ways in which they relate to the production and uses of those instruments.

Keywords: cosmos; European cities; Hester Higton; Isabelle Pantin; Karin Ekholm; Katie Taylor; Samuel Gessner



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