C1522

Tabula Moderna India Orientalis. De Indorvm Moribvs & ritu in tabula decima & vndecima / Asiae Ptholemaei abunde dictum est. tu igitur si placet vide.

The rare, first edition in full original hand colouring, of the first printed map of Southeast Asia and a landmark in the cartographical representation of the area. Fries’s edition of Ptolemy’s Geographia, published Strasbourg 1522 by Joannes Gruninger, included for … Read Full Description

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S/N: RLAR-041-ASI-FRIES–226379
(RW05-A)
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Full Title:

Tabula Moderna India Orientalis. De Indorvm Moribvs & ritu in tabula decima & vndecima / Asiae Ptholemaei abunde dictum est. tu igitur si placet vide.

Date:

C1522

Condition:

Worm holes repaired, otherwise in good condition, without browning, with centre fold as issued.

Technique:

Woodcut with original hand colouring.

Image Size: 

460mm 
x 320mm
AUTHENTICITY
Tabula Moderna India Orientalis. De Indorvm Moribvs & ritu in tabula decima & vndecima / Asiae Ptholemaei abunde dictum est. tu igitur si placet vide. - Antique Map from 1522

Genuine antique
dated:

1522

Description:

The rare, first edition in full original hand colouring, of the first printed map of Southeast Asia and a landmark in the cartographical representation of the area.

Fries’s edition of Ptolemy’s Geographia, published Strasbourg 1522 by Joannes Gruninger, included for the first time this new modern map of Southeast Asia. The geography is based on Waldseemuller’s 1507 cordiform world map, which in turn was derived from the Henricus Martellus Germanus’s model. The map’s nomenclature is derived principally from the scribed accounts of Marco Polo’s return from China in 1292.

Fries’s principal islands as shown on the map are:
Java Major is Java, Fries has mapped it solely from textual references rather than any known cartographic prototype. He quotes Polo ‘its compass is 3,000 miles.
Peutam is Bintan and shown larger, as Polo offered no estimate of the islands size and it was also recorded in the 13th century treatise of the geographer Ibn Sa’id.
Java Minor is Sumatra and Fries places it directly below Bintan. Polo stated ‘100 miles south-east of Bintan lies the island of Lesser Java‘.
Sumatra Fries provides a more correctly complete reconstruction of Polo’s Sumatra than had previously been shown.
Necuveran is the Nicobar group which lies north-west of Sumatra’s northern tip.
Angama is the Andaman group which Polo had described as a single island rather than a group.
Seylam is Fries’s Ceylon, positioned incorrectly from his placement of Andaman to the south of Nicobar (rather than to the north), having assumed Polo sailed from the north coast to Ceylon. As a result Fries incorrectly made Malaya, India and consequently includes Indian nomenclature on it. At the lower right is a small woodcut depicting the dismembering of a corpse.

This first edition is identified by the scrolled title banner with clover leaves at each end, this is lacking in the later editions of 1525, 1535 and 1541. Additionally the line spacing of the title on the verso is positioned as such:

First line: Tabula Moderna In
Second line: dia Orientalis
Third line: De Indorvm Moribvs & ritu in tabula decima & vndecima / Asiae Ptholemaei
Fourth line: abunde dictum est. tu igitur si placet vide.

The magnificent, full page woodcut on the verso is possibly by Albert Durer.

References:
Parry, D. The Cartography of the East Indian Islands Insulae Indiae Orientalis. London 2005: Parry p.65 Ill. 3.7 (1525 edition).
Suarez, T. Early Mapping of Southeast Asia. Singapore 1999: p.114-118, fig. 62.
Stevens, H. Ptolemy's Geography. London 1973: p.47.
:.


Collections:
National Library Australia: Bib ID 4561394 (1541without original hand colouring)

Lorenz Fries (1490 - 1532)

Fries was born in Alsace around 1490 and studied medicine at university. Having successfully completed his education, Fries established himself as a physician and settled in Strasbourg, in about 1519. He wrote on medical topics and met the Strasbourg printer and publisher Johann Gruninger, an associate of the St. Die group of scholars formed by, among others, Walter Lud, Martin Ringmann and Martin Waldseemuller. Gruninger was responsible for printing several of the maps prepared by Waldseemuller, and for supervising the cutting the wood blocks for the maps, for the 1513 edition of Ptolemy, edited by the group. The major project that Fries and Gruninger worked on was a new edition of the Geographia of Claudius Ptolemy, which was published by Johann Koberger in 1522.

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