[WALDSEEMÜLLER, Martin (c.1470-c.1522).] Orbis Typus Universalis Iuxta Hydrographorum Traditionem. [Strasbourg: 1513].
Finely coloured example of the extremely rare 'Admiral's Map,' by 'the most important cartographer of the early sixteenth century' (Karrow). In 1505, the cartographer Martin Waldseemüller was invited to join an ecclesiastical college at Saint-Dié-des-Vosges, a small town some 50 miles south-west of Strasbourg. Known as the Gymnasium Vosagense, this group of scholars was under the protection of René II (1451-1508), Duke of Lorraine. Here, Waldseemüller was tasked with creating a new globe, a large world map, and a new edition of Ptolemy’s Geographia. This latter was quite delayed - the introduction to the 1966 reprint of the Geographia by Skelton gives an excellent overview of the circumstances - and must have been printed at Strasbourg rather than at Saint-Dié. Nevertheless, 'If the publishing history of the 1513 Ptolemy is uncertain, its importance cannot be doubted' (Karrow), and the present lot is one of two maps including portions of the New World that introduce the modern map section of the book. The text suggests that Waldseemüller used material from 'a former Admiral of the most serene King of Portugal Ferdinand' as his source, hence the nomenclature 'Admiral's Map.' Karrow suggests that 1504/1505 Caveri (Canerio) portolan chart (now in the Bibliothèque nationale de France) was then in the possession of René, and is the source for the present map. Karrow 80/32; Shirley World 35.
Woodcut double-page map, coloured by an early hand, verso blank, with the Caribbean islands of Spagnolla [Haiti/Dominican Republic] and Isabella [Cuba], the northern coastline of South America shown in part outline, unnamed small piece of land in the mid-Atlantic with eastern coastline delineated, Greenland depicted as an elongated peninsula attached to the north of Scandinavia, Great Britain shown as a single island, rhumb lines intersecting at 17 points, 442 x 575mm (border), 447 x 602mm (sheet).