pla·​ni·​sphere ˈplā-nə-ˌsfir How to pronounce planisphere (audio)
: a representation of the circles of the sphere on a plane
especially : a polar projection of the celestial sphere and the stars on a plane with adjustable circles or other appendages for showing celestial phenomena for any given time
planispheric adjective

Example Sentences

Recent Examples on the Web Monthly sky maps take the place of a planisphere in this atlas, which covers both the northern and southern hemisphere. Popular Science, 13 Sep. 2019 Kids can craft their own planispheres and play games about the night sky. Sara Cagle, Los Angeles Times, 31 July 2019

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'planisphere.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History


alteration of Middle English planisperie, from Medieval Latin planisphaerium, from Latin planum plane + sphaera sphere

First Known Use

14th century, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of planisphere was in the 14th century

Dictionary Entries Near planisphere

Cite this Entry

“Planisphere.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 9 Jun. 2023.

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