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Description found in Archives
Place of creation
Scope and content
The map stretches from Greenland down the coast of Canada and the Atlantic Seaboard to the West Indies, including a corner of South America, and from the coast of China in the west to the Azores and Cape Verde in the east.
Original can be viewed in the presence o
f an early cartographic archivist.
150 Item no. assigned by LAC 150
Credit Library and Archives Canada.
Cartographer: Forlani, Paolo.
This is a second state of Paolo Forlani's rare and finely engraved map of North America which is the earliest printed map devoted solely to North America, the first to portray that landmass as a separate continent and the first to show the so-called Strait of Anian separating America from Asia at the approximate location of the Bering Strait. Forlani based his rendering largely on the western part of a world map published by his colleague, the great Venetian cartographer Giacomo Gastaldi, several years before. Gastaldi had been the first to formulate the concept of the Strait of Anian, a name that probably originated with Ania, a Chinese province mentioned in a 1559 edition of Marco Polo's travels. Forlani's early graphic depiction of Gastaldi's mistaken theory, which persisted well into the eighteenth century, makes this map a cornerstone work in the mapping of America. In the early 1560s, Forlani also published a map of South America and the West Indies, La descrittione de tutto il Peru. According to the reserach of David Woodward Zaltieri purchased some of Forlani's copperplates in late 1565 or early 1566 and added his imprint information " Venetijs aeneis formis Bologinini Zalterij Anno M.D.L.X.V.I."
On verso: Hand written in the upper right hand corner "Mare settentrionale Incgnito"
Contains watermark: Tree in Shield C as described in David Woodward's "Catalogue of watermarks in Italian Printed Maps, ca 1540-1600" No 133.
Cartographic math data
Citation / reference note
Woodward, David. The maps and prints of Paolo Forlani : a descriptive bibliography, 1990
Shirley, Rodney W. The mapping of the world. London : Holland Press, 1983, 106
McCorkle, Barbara New England in Early Printed Maps 1513 to 1800. Entry 566.1 (p.9)
Goss, John " The Mappong of North America: Three centuries of map-making 1500-1860", Entry 10
Availability of other formats note
"Plotting the Land of Ontario, 1564-1919" A Joint exhibit by the Canadiana Department, R.O.M. ; MacDonald Ophthalmic Foundation ; Ontario Department of Public records and Archives to Coincide with the 5th Annual Conference of the Association of Canadian Map Libraries, held at Torotonto, May 26-28, 1971.
"Discovery and Mapping of Upper Canada" An Exhibition held at the Canadiana department Royal Ontario Museum , May-December 1967
Canada on Maps 1564-1616: Stratford Festival Exhibition 1966.
1. North America - Maps - Early works to 1800.
Other system control no.
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