The Blaeu globes

Two of the masterpieces in the collection of the Nottebohm Room are Blaeu’s celestial and terrestrial globes. Our online exhibition discusses their history, their maker, their relevance and their restoration.

Baron de Pret de Terveken, the Mayor of the town of Hemiksem, donated Blaeu’s terrestrial and celestial globes to the City of Antwerp 170 years ago. Almost two centuries later, they were in dire need of a rejuvenation. The globes were restored with the support of the King Baudouin Foundation and BASF Antwerp. In September 2013, the restored globes returned to their familiar location in the Nottebohm Room.

This online exhibition examines the restoration process and also zooms in on the history of these globes. Who was Willem Blaeu? Why were globes so important in the seventeenth century? And why are these globes so special? And who was Baron de Pret de Terveken, the man who donated the globes?