Universal Atlas

Universal Atlas Map No. 15. The World

Map No. 15. The World

Size: 406 x 534 mm
The title around the frame reads: Universalis mundi figura atque navigatiorum orbis terrarum (scitus): “Representation of all the known world and also the maritime routes on the terrestrial globe”. The title is covered in gold paint and has been deciphered by means of special devices.
Mathematical elements: the sides of the world, the tropics and the polar circles are marked.

Latitude scale: 1º = 1.5mm

League scale (miles): the measurements are not clear.
Comparing this map with the one which resembles it most, i.e. the map of the world in the Dresden Atlas, reveals differences in the outlines of rivers and the lack of place names, apart from the names of the continents: Asia, Africa, Europe, the New World (South America).
 The north of Europe is depicted in the same way as in the map of Europe in this atlas, and differs from the atlas mentioned earlier in that it is oriented towards the north coast of Eurasia.
 There are certain differences in the images entitled Greenland, the gulf of Fandi and Madagascar. The image of the Antarctic continent extends further south, beyond the line of the polar circle. An island with the same outline as in André Homem’s 1559 map is depicted at the tip of the Antarctic. The only other similar image features in the map of Brazil in the 1561 Atlas. The image of this island does not feature on the map of the world in this atlas.
 The frames are identical to those in the 1558 Atlas.

Ludmila Kildushevskaya
Russian National Library
(Fragment of the Universal Atlas of Diogo Homem commentary volume)

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