WILSON, Henry (1623-1741). The description and use of that most excellent invention, call'd the globular chart. London: J. Senex and Tho. Taylor, et al, 1722.

$ 3,800.00

WILSON, Henry. The description and use of that most excellent invention, call'd the globular chart: Shewing its Agreeableness to the Globe, And the Natural and Easy Consequences thereof in the Practice of Navigation; with a specimen of a sea-chart in that projection; and trigonometrical calculations, to prove the Truth thereof, both in Course, Latitude, Longitude, Meridian Distance (or Departure) Distance in the Arch of a great Circle, and Distance in the Rumb, tho' so Extensive as to exceed 1200 Leagues; and all measur'd by a Scale of Equal Parts, which cannot be done upon any Projection but this only. To which is prefix'd an answer to Mr Haselden's letter to Dr. Halley, Proving by Mathematical Demonstration, that his Principal Argument is false by above Three in Five; the rest invalid, and the whole incoherent. With an appendix, containing an answer to Mr. Collier, and proving that these two Authors contradict themselves, and one another. By Henry Wilson, Late Mathematician in His Majesty's Navy, and Author of several Treatises, in Navigation, Astronomy, & c. London: J. Senex and Tho. Taylor, et al, 1722.


Small 4to., (8 x 6 inches). Fine folding engraved map "The True Globular Chart", woodcut head-pieces and initials. Modern tan calf backed blue paper boards.

Wilson's energetic treatise on the sense of creating navigational charts based on the true shape of the globe, ie spherical, rather than on the cylindrical projection of Mercator and Wright. "The Globular Projection of Sea-Charts (the Truth and Advantage of which has of late incited the Expectation and Desire of many able Navigators to see it finish'd) was begun about four Years ago; but the Work was retarded by my going to serve the right Honourable Sir George Byng, in the Quality of Mathematician, a-board of his Majesty's Ship the Barfleur, in the Mediterranean. However, after my Return, we made a further Progress in the Work, which met with Such General Encouragement, that it even engaged us to proceed; and in a short Time we produc'd such Specimens as had the Approbation of Learned and Impartial Men, as a great Improvement in Navigation, especially in that useful (but hitherto intricate) Part, viz. Sailing by the Arch of a great Circle" (page 3). 

The "True Globular Chart" shows the northern Atlantic Ocean, from Hudson's Straits to Lapland, and New Scotland to the Barbary Coast. Page 7 is a prospectus for Harris, Senex and Wilson's "Compleat Sea-Atlas", containing "about 150 sheets; 50 of which will be Charts" from a "True Globular Projection", which became "The Atlas maritimus & commercialis" (1728), a work to which Halley lent his assistance and the text for which is said to have been written by Defoe, featured maps drawn on a new 'globular' projection patented in 1721, which Senex had himself devised in association with John Harris and Henry Wilson. ESTC T95471. Catalogued by Kate Hunter