Collection: Osher Collection
Notes: Note in upper left: "Priuilegio Imp. et Belgico decennali A. Ortel. excud. 1585." Note at bottom right: "Illvstris. Ac Potentiss. Regi Frederico II Daniae, Norvegiae, Slavorum, Gothorvmque Regi, etc. Principi suo Clementissimo, Andreas Velleius describeb, et dedicabat." Dedicated to King Frederick II of Denmark. Verso: Text in Spanish. Spanish editions of the Theatrum were initiated by Christoffel Plantin in 1588 showing his loyalty to King Philip II of Spain.
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Dimensions: 34 x 49 cm. on sheet 46 x 56 cm.
Historical Context: This is one of the more spectacular maps in the Ortelius atlas, with its vivid depiction of the rugged terrain of Iceland including fiords, mountain ranges, glaciers, and the erupting Hekla volcano. Its most engaging feature, however, is the collection of fantastic sea monsters inhabiting the surrounding waters. Some of them are based on faulty observation or inaccurate descriptions of real creatures such as whales. It is likely that the majority derived from medieval legends, mariners' tales, or outright artistic license. As testimony to their purported authenticity, each of the creatures is assigned an identifying letter keyed to a detailed description on the back of the map.
LC Call Number: G6930 1602 .O7
Accession Number: OS-1602-1