Auction 113, Lot 56

"[Monsters] Les Monstres Marins, et Terrestres, lesquels on Trouve en Beaucoup de Lieux es Parties Septentrionales", Munster/Belleforest

Subject: Cartographic Curiosities

Period: 1575 (published)

Publication: Cosmographiae Universalis

Color: Hand Color

Size:
13.5 x 10.4 inches
34.3 x 26.4 cm

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 as known in the sixteenth century. Across the top is a panel showing land-based creatures. But the majority of the "monsters" are ferocious sea creatures shown devouring hapless sailors and wrecking ships. French text on verso with key to the engraving. This example is from the rare French edition of Munster's Cosmographie published by Francois de Belleforest.

References:

Condition: A

Sharp impression printed on better quality paper than some of the earlier editions. Paper replaced in bottom left corner, not affecting image.

Estimate: $1,100 - $1,300

Sold for: $1,500

Closed on 12/7/2005

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