Accession No


Brief Description

dissected card / paper terrestrial globe, with original sales leaflet and instructions, by Mrs. Johnstone, English, 1812


England; London; Tower Hill; 20 George Street





Earliest Date

Jan. 1, 1812

Latest Date

Dec. 31, 1812

Inscription Date


paper (card); glass; wood


Globe height 185mm; diameter 150mm; dome height 250mm; diameter 230mm

Special Collection


Purchased from Trevor Philip & Sons, 75a Jermyn Street, St James, London, England on 12/07/1999. Purchased with grant aid from PRISM fund administered by the Science Museum. Purchased as a pair with 5620.


‘Publish’d April 20th 1812, by Mrs. Johnstone. Sole Inventor, No. 20 George Str. Tower Hill.
LONDON’ (printed on globe)

Description Notes

Dissected card / paper terrestrial globe, with original sales leaflet and instructions, by Mrs. Johnstone, English, 1812

Made of paper and wood and housed in its original wooden box. Includes the original sales leaflet, wooden ruler, and instructions on use and construction. Four pieces of thin wood with printed paper stuck on one side (some may be painted directly?) make up stand, 13 pieces of thinner card make up a globe which slots into stand, printed and hand coloured on one side, two pieces have printed paper stuck to reverse to show a map on both sides. Has been cut out by hand- slightly imperfectly.

Instruction booklet, 23 pages, orange paper cover is too small for pages.
Wood has at least 2 worm holes, booklet has 3.
Purchased with a modern glass and wood dome for display. 5619a


Katie Taylor; 'Learning with dissectable paper globe kits'; Explore Whipple Collections online article; Whipple Museum of the History of Science; University of Cambridge; 2009:


During the early nineteenth century, celestial and terrestrial globes played a central role in children’s education. Intended for polite juvenile instruction, this wood and paper model by Mrs. Johnstone was produced in 1812 as ‘the first and only inventor’ of a dissectable terrestrial globe. Once assembled, such objects functioned as a talking-piece. Conversation was at once entertaining for children and educational, as it fostered engagement with the topic. Didactic familiarization with technical terms and polite conversation in the parlor would have revolved around the object, and could have included topics such as the plurality of worlds. For the educationalists Richard Edgeworth (1744–1817) and his daughter Maria Edgeworth (1768–1849) conversation played a central role in their juvenile educational programmes.

Created by: Allison Ksiazkiewicz on 14/01/2014


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