Adina Sommer`s Rare Antique Maps and Contemporary Art

Erythraei sive Rubri Maris Periplus…

  • Translation

Article ID ASA056
Artist Ortelius (1527-1598)
Abraham Ortelius, (1527 - 1598) Antwerp, comes from an Augsburg family and was born in Antwerp, Spain, where he lived throughout his life. After thorough training, he joined the Antwerp Guild of St. Luke in 1547 as a card painter. In 1554 he took over an antiquarian bookshop that mainly deals with the coloring, distribution and publishing of maps. Basically he is more of a publisher than a scholar. And so he also made the acquaintance of another great man of his time, Gerhard Mercator (1512-1594), who encouraged him to draw cards and to make maps of the most varied of countries. His first cartographic work of his own is a large 8-sheet map of the world that appears in Antwerp in 1564. This is followed by a two-sheet map of Egypt (1565) and another of Asia (1567). The great achievement of Ortelius, who was one of the most famous European cartographers of his time, and the enthusiastic reception of his theater, mark a decisive turning point in the history of the world map. The new path is mapped out with the Theatrum. For the general view of the world, the appearance of Ortelius-Theatrum is important insofar as it emphatically confirms that America is a completely independent continent, which is also not connected to the Asian mainland mass at its northern tip. Ortelius was the first to come up with the idea of ​​producing a handy collection of reliable maps, all kept in the same format and only by the same author for each country. These sheets could also be bound into a book for easy storage and use. Mercator, who also realized the idea of ​​a world atlas from 1569, persuaded his friend to publish the famous Theatrum Orbis Terrarrum. Ortelius collected, traveled, corresponded and negotiated for 10 years before he could have his work printed in the best European printing house (Plantijn / Amsterdam). In addition to technical difficulties, Ortelius had to submit to the political / religious conditions, since maps were also subject to strict scrutiny during the Inquisition. Biblical scenes are pleasant, portraits of outstanding Catholics are welcome, but not family coats of arms or other emblems that could be politically suspect. On May 20, 1570, his first edition of the Theatrum Orbis Terrarum, the first collection of maps in book form, was published, financed and edited by Gillis Hooftman, an Antwerp merchant, banker and shipowner. Atlases did not yet have this name at that time. This collection was published between 1570 and 1612 in 42 editions and in 7 languages: Latin, German, Dutch, French, Spanish, English and Italian. Unlike his professional colleagues, he clearly referenced the sources of his maps and texts. The work contains, among other things, an illustration of the world known until 1492 and was therefore already looking back at the time the map was created.
Title Erythraei sive Rubri Maris Periplus…
Year ca. 1599
Description Map of the Arabian Sea with Egypt, Arabia, India and partly Southeast Asia with Java. On an inset map of the eastern Mediterranean Sea with South Itally and Sicily and Greece. Two Hemispheres on the upper right and left corner showing the Northpole and Holyland.
Arabia, an early empire on the largely uninhabitable Arabian Peninsula, was the legendary Saba in the south, which at times ruled all of southwest Arabia and had colonies in Eritrea and Tanzania. In the seventh century, Islam became the dominant religion on the peninsula. The Islamic prophet Muhammad was born in Mecca around 570 and began preaching in the city in 610, but immigrated to Medina in 622. Mohammed founded a new unified polity on the Arabian Peninsula which, under the subsequent caliphates of Rashidun and Umayyads, experienced a century of rapid expansion of Arab power far beyond the Arabian Peninsula in the form of a vast Muslim Arab Empire with an expanding sphere of influence from the northwest Indian subcontinent across Central Asia, the Middle East, North Africa, South Italy and the Iberian Peninsula to the Pyrenees. Despite its spiritual significance, Arabia soon became politically a fringe region of the Islamic world, with the main medieval Islamic states located at different times in cities as distant as Damascus, Baghdad and Cairo. However, from the 10th century (and indeed until the 20th century) the Hashemite Sharifs of Mecca retained a state in the most developed part of the region, the Hejaz. Their domain originally included only the holy cities of Mecca and Medina, but was extended to the rest of the Hejaz in the 13th century. Although the Sharifs in the Hejaz exercised largely independent authority, they were usually subject to the suzerainty of one of the great Islamic empires of the time. In the Middle Ages, this included the Abbasids of Baghdad and the Fatimids, Ayyubids and Mamluks of Egypt.
Place of Publication Antwerp
Dimensions (cm)36 x 46,5
ConditionVery good
Coloringcolored
TechniqueCopper print

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