Carl Spitzweg repeated this image, and had different titles for different versions. The Astronomer and The Astrologer are traditional titles but in literature we also find The Stargazer or The Starreader (Der Sterndeuter). Two men are in a room in a tower with a large telescope and a globe to the right. Through the window we can see that the night sky is clear. The thin older man in the background is wearing long robes and is adorned with facial hair, his glasses very are thick. They are an attribute of scientists who have weak eyes because they have become well read over time. This weird but scholarly old man who is probably the owner of the "observatory" that in which the scene is set. The astronomer is visited by a seemingly unintelligent man who is wearing clothes that seem to be from the 17th century. He is holding his plumed hat in his hand, and with his mouth agape, he is staring at the sky with the telescope.

Everything in the painting allows for the conclusion that this is a scene set in the 17th century; the figures are historic personalities. Spitzweg likely parodies these persons. The man at the telescope is Wallenstein (1583 – 1634) who was a famous commander during the Thirty Years' War (1618 - 1648). Critical views on Wallenstein claim that he had blind faith in astrology. We do know that he commissioned Johannes Kepler (1571 – 1630) with his horoscope in Prague in 1608, and that he employed the greedy astrologer Giovanni Battista Senno (1600 – 1656), also known as Senni or Seni, for many years. In the painting Seni at the Dead Body of Wallenstein by the Munich artist Carl Theodor von Piloty (1826 – 1886) from 1855, Seni looks similar to Spitzweg's astrologer though he does not wear glasses. In another painting by an artist who is unknown today, Seni is looking at the night sky with a telescope while Wallenstein is standing at his side. Seni also plays an important role in German author Friedrich Schiller's (1759 – 1805) dramatic poem, "Wallenstein." In the second part of the trilogy, titled "The Piccolomini," the stage direction for the first scene in the second act reads: "During this enters Seni, like an old Italian doctor, in black, and clothed somewhat fantastically;" the description corresponds with Spitzweg's portrayal of the figure.


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