Universe Europe maritime eiusque navigationis descriptio. By: Lucas Janszoon Waghenaer Date: 1583

1583 Universe Europe maritime eiusque navigationis descriptio. Generale Paschaerte van Europa . . .

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By: Lucas Janszoon Waghenaer

Date: 1583 (published) Antwerp

Original Size: 16.5 x 22 inches (42 x 56 cm)

This is a fine print reproduction of the earliest obtainable general sea chart of Europe. The map focuses on the British Isles, Iceland, and the western Mediterranean, including the mythical Island of Brazil. It is richly embellished with compass roses, sea monsters, sailing ships, coats of arms and rhumb lines throughout.

The island of Brazil, or Hy Brasil, shown here typically as a circular island with a river bisecting it, is part of Irish folklore. It is said to appear from a constant shroud of mist for one day every seven years. However, as Barbara Freitag has shown, the island was only Gaelicized in the mid-nineteenth century. It was originally the product of late medieval and early modern Mediterranean mapping practices that named and located Brasil Island off the west coast of Ireland. It first appeared on portolan charts as early at 1325 and continued to wander the eastern Atlantic in charts by Ortelius and Mercator, among others.

The Waghenaer chart, is important as it wss a practical sailing aid, yet it is also a chronicle of geographic illusion.

Inventory #51689

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What can be referred to as modern cartography has been around for over 550 years. Throughout that time an enormous amount of new land was discovered, cities were founded while others perished. International trade and travel became the norm, political borders were ever-changing, and numerous wars were waged. With all that being said, hundreds of thousands of maps were created that show such events and episodes in time. 
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