The Moon in its Final Quarter

Claude Mellan French

Not on view

This modern-looking engraving is one of three remarkable prints by Mellan that depict the phases of the moon after sketches he made in Aix-en-Provence in early 1636. Mellan drew what he observed through a telescope, a Dutch invention from about 1608. The engravings were commissioned by Nicolas-Claude Fabri de Peiresc, a French humanist, and Pierre Gassendi, a theologian with a passionate interest in astronomy. Mellan completed the prints upon his return to Paris in May 1637. Peiresc, who died in June of that year, never saw the finished works.

The Moon in its Final Quarter, Claude Mellan (French, Abbeville 1598–1688 Paris), Engraving; first state of two

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