Background and Identification
A globe is a spherical model of a celestial body such as Earth or other planets, or of the celestial sphere. A celestial sphere is a globe that is concentric to Earth on which all objects in the sky can be projected. Globes are similar to maps in that they can be used to navigate, but are unlike maps in that globes do not distort the surface that they portray except to scale it down. Model globes of the Earth are called terrestrial globes, and model globes of the celestial sphere are called celestial globes.
Terrestrial globes generally show landmasses and bodies of water. Some terrestrial globes indicate nations and major cities as well as latitude and longitude lines. Some terrestrial globes have raised reliefs to show large landforms and mountains. Celestial globes depict notable stars and positions of prominent astronomical objects such as planets. Celestial spheres are often divided into constellations.
The first known historical mention of a globe is from Strabo, describing the Globe of Crates around 150 BC. The oldest surviving terrestrial globe is the Erdapfel, which was created in 1492 by Martin Behaim, a German textile merchant and cartographer. The oldest surviving celestial globe was carved in the 2nd century Roman Empire and is held up by the Farnese Atlas, a marble sculpture of Atlas, a Titan of Greek mythology.