Rare Geographic Atlas: Julius C. Solinus; Polyhistor, Rerum Toto Orbe Memorabilium Thesaurus Locpletissimus. 1543.
Item Number: Book 706-c
Solinus, C. Julius; Polyhistor, Rerum Toto Orbe Memorabilium Thesaurus Locpletissimus.. Basel: Michael Isingrin, 1543. Folio, pp. 20, 230, 2, plus two folding maps and eighteen in-text maps. Woodcut vignette on title page and final leaf.
This rare atlas is complete and in the original limp vellum with black spine titles. String ties are perished, light soiling to boards. Very early damp stain to lower margin of text and maps has had archival treatment.
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Julius Solinus (ca. 250 A.D.) was a famous Roman geographer. His “POLYHISTOR” was first published by Nicholas Jenson in Venice in 1473, and Isingrin's edition of 1538 was the first to contain maps by the noted cartographer Sebastian Münster. The work is also a landmark in the mapping of North America, this collection of geographic accounts, edited by Sebastian Münster, contains the earliest known representation of the north-west coast of America on a printed map. The coast is shown as a land mass in the upper right corner of the folding "Asia Major" map, and is labeled "Terra Incognita,". It takes the form of a small bay with trees, and hills. The cartographer of the map is unidentified, though historians assert that it was drawn by Münster. Münster updated the 1473 edition by adding notes to the text containing recently known geographic information. The Asia Major map also contains one of the first delineations of a strait between Asia and America. This is some two hundred years before Bering's voyages to the region. The work is also the first to include a printed map of Asia as a whole. The work is a significant contribution to geography, containing a first image of the northwest coast of North America.