Slide #323

TITLE: Aurelius world map

DATE: 1514

AUTHOR: Cornelius Aurelius

DESCRIPTION: As described by R.W. Shirley, this crude map, not drawn on any recognizable projection, is best described as a free adaptation of Martin Waldseemüller's (Slide #312), but with a great deal of distortion in all directions. This curiously attractive map shows the world surrounded by water and embracing a large number of islands, both real and ficticious, without regard for their specific shape or location. The southern part of the American continent, named America, is as close to Africa as is Europe across the Straits of Gibraltrar.

In spite of these imperfections, the map is an interesting example of early Dutch woodcutting, giving a non-scientific representation of the world according to current knowledge. The landmasses are totally saturated with place-names, rivers and mountains. "Pulls" from the woodblock were taken over many years and four different "states" of the map are known.


1. Dated 1514 and published by Jan Severszoon, currentl at the University Library, Gröningen

2. Slightly revised but still dated 1514, a copy is in the 1517 edition of the Cronycke in the Library

of the College of St. Aloysius, The Hague

3. Dated 1529, in the Algemeen Rijksarchief, The Hague

4. Undated, with a re-cut cartouche signifying publication by Johannes Severus [a.k.a. Zepherinus],

in Amsterdam; now in the British Library attributed to 1535, but an earlier date has been suggested.


LOCATION: University Library, Gröningen

Library of the College of St. Aloysius, The Hague

Algemeen Rijksarchief, The Hague

BL Maps C.2.a.2, British Library, London


Size: 36.5 X 50.5 cm



*Shirley, R.W., The Mapping of the World, Plate 39, #37, p. 42



Index of Renaissance Maps