Claudius Ptolemy was a mathematician, astronomer and geographer who worked in Alexandria, then a part of the Roman Empire, in the 2nd century AD. One of the most learned and influential men of his time, his theories dominated both astronomy and geography for nearly 1500 years. His writings were kept alive by Arabic scholars during the Middle Ages and reemerged in Europe during the Renaissance. The birth of printing led to wide dissemination of his great works on astronomy and geography. There were a number of editions of his Geographia beginning in 1477. These early editions contained maps based on his original writings, known as Ptolemaic maps. As geographic knowledge increased with the explorations of Columbus, Magellan, Cabot and others, maps of the New World were added, and maps of the Old World were revised. Ptolemy's Geographia continued to be revised and published by some of the most important cartographers including Martin Waldseemuller, Sebastian Munster, Giacomo Gastaldi, Jodocus Hondius, and Gerard Mercator (whose last edition was published in 1730).
This Ptolemaic map is centered on France, and extends to include present-day Belgium, Luxembourg, Switzerland, and parts of Germany and Italy. Exaggerated mountain ranges and ancient place names fill the map. Latin text on verso.
References: Mickwitz & Miekkavaara #211-3.
A nice impression on a clean bright sheet of paper with a bunch of grapes watermark and a couple of old manuscript notations that do not distract. There is a short tear in the right blank margin that has been closed on verso with archival tape.