This late 19th-century image, titled "Gebiet der Sonne" (Domain of the Sun), is a comprehensive astronomical chart presenting various celestial models and diagrams. It is a didactic tool that illustrates several aspects of the solar system and celestial phenomena as understood at the time.
The central feature of the chart is a heliocentric model of the solar system, showcasing the Sun at the center with the orbits of the planets, including Earth, depicted as concentric circles around it. The precision of the orbits suggests an understanding of the elliptical nature of planetary motion, a concept well-established by the time this chart was created.
Surrounding the central diagram are several insets and tables. One inset likely displays the phases of the Moon, while another might illustrate the transit of Venus, an event of significant scientific interest in the 19th century for determining the scale of the solar system. Additionally, diagrams of various planets show relative size and surface features, reflecting the telescopic observations possible at the time.
The upper left corner contains what appears to be diagrams of solar and lunar eclipses, displaying the alignment of the Sun, Earth, and Moon. The presence of cometary trajectories highlights contemporary interest in and knowledge of comets, which were subjects of intense study during this period.
On the right, tabulated data and additional circular diagrams could represent the periodicity of celestial events or detailed observations of planetary rotations and orbits.