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Globe, English, Kelvin Hughes, Celestial, 7-Inch Globe, Maritime Boxed, London, 1975


Kelvin & Hughes
7-Inch Star Globe, Epoch 1975
George Philip & Son, Ltd., London: c. 1975
Mounted in wooden box
Box dimensions: 10.75 inches high; 10.5 inches wide; 10 inches deep

A celestial naval navigation globe with major stars and constellations, mounted, as issued in a hinged wooden box which serves as the stand and allows for the globe to be portable and to be stored when not in use. The globe is in a calibrated full meridian and rests a circular wooden opening in the bottom half of the box within a calibrated brass directional horizon band. A detachable hemisphere made of four graduated altitude quadrants surmounted by a ball finial fits over the globe. The globe kit includes a removable brass index clamp for the altitude quadrants. Instructions for use are mounted in the inside lid of the box. The box closes with two eyehooks and is fitted with a leather strap handle.

Product description continues below.


The globe is made of twelve cream-colored printed gores laid to the celestial poles, the equatorial graduated in degrees and hours, the colures graduated in degrees, the ecliptic graduated in days of the month, the constellations identified by dotted lines connecting the stars, shown to five magnitudes and labeled with Greek characters, some named.

This device is intended to assist with navigation at sea according to the position of stars, to be used by navy personnel aboard a large ship.  This particular example is based on star positions as at 1975 and was commissioned and used by the Royal Canadian Navy.

Kelvin & Hughes Ltd. is a well-known British maker of maritime and scientific instruments, now known as Kelvin Hughes. It was created in 1947 as a merger of Henry Hughes & Son Ltd. of London, and the Glasgow firm of Kelvin, Bottomley & Baird Ltd., both venerable manufacturers of nautical instruments with complex histories extending back to the mid 19th century. Henry Hughes & Son manufactured an earlier version of the device shown above in 1920. Both the 1920 version, and one dated 1975 that is nearly identical to the one offered herein, are in the collection of the National Maritime Museum, Greenwich, England. Those globes are pictured and described in the book Globes at Greenwich (see References below).

George Philip & Sons was a major British globe maker. Read more about the firm in our Guide to Globe Makers.

Condition: Globe generally very good with the usual overall light toning, handling, wear. A few small minor abrasion scrapes, professionally restored. Box very good, recently professionally refinished.


Dekker, Elly, et al. Globes at Greenwich: A Catalogue of the Globes and Armillary Spheres in the National Maritime Museum, Greenwich. London: Oxford University Press and the National Maritime Museum, 1999. pp. 366-68 and 379-81.

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