Typus cosmographicus uniuersalis

Author: Münster, Sebastian
Date: 1555
Location: World

Dimensions: 40.0 x 55.0 cm.
Scale: Scale not given


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Published in Johann Huttich and Simon Grynaeus's ''Novus Orbis Regionum'' (Paris, 1555). Decorated with sea monsters, mermaids, exotic animals, and cannibals, this wood cut map provides a marked contrast to the simplistic diagrams considered the earliest printed world maps. While the latter presented a world view based in Judeo-Christian theology, this uniquely ornamented map emphasized the strange and fanciful discoveries emanating from European explorations in America, Africa, and Asia. Most likely prepared by the geographer Sebastian Münster and decorated by the artist Hans Holbein the Younger, this map illustrated the Basel edition of ''Novus Orbis Regionum'', a collection of early voyage accounts, first published in 1532 and republished in 1555. The French edition of the same book (also published in 1532) included Oronce Fines double cordiform map. Underscoring Europeans dilemma during the first quarter of the 16th century in rationalizing the New World discoveries, Münster's map followed the model of Waldseemüller and Apian showing the New World discoveries as a separate continent named America placed between two distinctly separate oceans. Fines map was more ambiguous, showing a fairly accurately delineated America, but attached to the Asian mainland in the northern latitudes.

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