"Galliae Tabule Geographicae", Mercator, Gerard
Subject: Title Pages
Period: 1585 (published)
Color: Hand Color
8.8 x 12.5 inches
22.4 x 31.8 cm
This title page is from the first edition of the Galliae (France) volume of Gerard Mercator's edition of Ptolemy's Geographia. The beautifully designed sheet is in the Mannerist style, composed of elaborate scrolls and volutes which are characteristic of this style, as well as decorative fruits, flowers, birds, and masks. At the top of the rectangular centerpiece is the portrait of a king, possibly representing Charlemagne, who was King of the Franks and Emperor of the Romans. For nearly sixty years, during one of the most important periods in cartographic history, Gerard Mercator was the preeminent cartographer - his name is second only to Ptolemy and is now synonymous with the form of map projection still in use today. He devoted much of his life to his maps of Ptolemy's Geography.
References: Shirley (TP) #17; Van der Krogt (Vol. I) #1:01.
Original color with light toning and soiling that are mostly confined to the blank margins.