Title of the map:
"MEE RWUNDER UND SELTZAME THIER, WIE DIE IN DEN MITNACHTIGEN LANDERN IM MEER"
Very unusual antique wood engraved Sea Monster chart, by Sebastian MUNSTER (1488-1552).
This is one of the more fanciful cartographic curiosities and a unique view of Renaissance attitudes toward the unknown lands beyond the civilized world. This woodblock illustration presents a compendium of monsters that were thought to exist in the sixteenth century. Many subsequent mapmakers used these monsters to illustrate the lands and seas of the unexplored world. Across the top is a panel showing land-based creatures, including reindeer, elk (here shown pulling a sleigh), snakes, and a gluttonous bear. The majority of the 'monsters' are ferocious sea creatures shown devouring hapless sailors and wrecking ships. There is a massive lobster shown with a person in its claws and a huge fanged whale erupting fountains of water from its head, as well as a tree that appears to bear ducks as fruit.
German text on verso.
Edition : Cosmographie Universelle du Monde de Sebastian Munster, German edition, 1598, Basle, 16th Century.
Size of the map with margins : 40 x 32,5 cm / 15,7 x 12,5 inches
Condition : good condition, handed colored
Sebastian Münster (20 January 1488- 26 May 1552) was a German cartographer and cosmographer. He also was a Christian Hebraist scholar who taught as a professor at the University of Basel. He was born in Ingelheim, near Mainz. His parents were farmers. In 1505, he entered the Franciscan order. Four years later, he entered a monastery where he became a student of Konrad Pelikan for five years. Münster completed his studies at the University of Tübingen in 1518. His graduate adviser was Johannes Stöffler. He left the Franciscans for the Lutheran Church in order to accept an appointment at the Reformed Church-dominated University of Basel in 1529. A professor of Hebrew, and a disciple of Elias Levita, he edited the Hebrew Bible (2 vols. fol., Basel, 1534–1535), accompanied by a Latin translation and a large number of annotations. He was the first German to produce an edition of the Hebrew Bible, and the first to prepare a Grammatica Chaldaica (Basel, 1527). His lexicographical labours included a Dictionarium Chaldaicum (1527), and a Dictionarium trilingue for Latin, Greek, and Hebrew in 1530. He released a Mappa Europae (map of Europe) in 1536. In 1537, he published a Rabbinical translation of the Gospel of Matthew in Hebrew which he had obtained from Spanish Conversos. In 1540 he published a Latin edition of Ptolemy's Geographia with illustrations. The 1550 edition contains cities, portraits, and costumes. Other writings that followed are Horologiographia (Basel, 1531), and Organum Uranicum (a treatise on the planetary motions, 1536).
His work, the Cosmographia , was the earliest description of the world. Sebastian Munster was one of the most influential cartographers in the 16th century. He was one of the first to create space in the woodblock for the insertion of place-names in metal type.
The Cosmographia was sold well and went through 24 editions. Its influence was widely spread by a production of woodcuts created of it by a variety of artists.
There is numerous editions in different languages including Latin, French, Italian, English, and even Czech. The Cosmographia was one of the most successful and popular works of the 16th century. It passed through 24 editions in 100 years. This success was due to the fascinating woodcuts (some by Hans Holbein the Younger, Urs Graf, Hans Rudolph Manuel Deutsch, and David Kandel), in addition to including the first to introduce "separate maps for each of the four continents known then – America, Africa, Asia and Europe." It was most important in reviving geography in 16th-century Europe. The last German edition was published in 1628, long after the death of Sebastian Munster.
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A Certification of Authenticity can be issued on request.
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WE DON'T SELL LASER AND COPIES MAPS, ALL WE SELL IS ORIGINAL AND ANTIQUE.
Due to the age an type of paper, some imperfections are to be expected. Please examine the images provided carefully, and if you have any questions please ask and we will be happy to help you.
Very unusual antique wood engraved Sea Monster chart, by Sebastian MUNSTER (1488-1552). The Cosmographia was one of the most successful and popular works of the 16th century. It passed through 24 editions in 100 years.