Auction 137, Lot 528

Italian Edition of Olaus Magnus' Carta Marina

"Historia della Genti et della Natura Cose Settentrionali",

Subject: Scandinavia

Period: 1565 (dated)


Color: Black & White

8.3 x 12.5 inches
21.1 x 31.8 cm

This is the scarce, first illustrated Italian edition of Olaus Magnus' Historia de Gentibus Septentrionalibus which translates roughly as "History of the Northern People". It covers Swedish life, customs and beliefs. 4vo, 572 pp. with hundreds of woodcuts and an important untitled full page version of Magnus' epic map of Scandinavia. This translates from the Latin to "map of the sea" and is the earliest map of the Nordic countries that gives details and place names (there are only two earlier maps of Scandinavia known - those of Claudius Clavus and Jacob Ziegler). Many of the illustrations on the map were taken from the larger Carta Marina, of which only two copies are known to exist. Unlike the 1555 edition, this map is a copperplate engraving that replaced the earlier woodcut version. Other than likely missing the frontispiece and title page, which has been replaced with a manuscript page, it appears to be complete. Hardbound, half calf, with modern black speckled paper boards.

References: Ginsburg #22.

Condition: B

The pages have some occasional foxing and staining and a few wormholes. The hinges are starting, the spine is perished and the covers are bumped, lightly stained and abraded.

Estimate: $5,500 - $7,500

Sold for: $3,000

Closed on 9/14/2011