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Gerard Mercator. [British Isles]. Eur. I Tab. [Europae Tabula I. In

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].  [. Cologne: 1578]. . A beautifully engraved map from the 1578 first Mercator edition of Ptolemy's . Plate size: 13.375 x 16.125 inches; 337 x 410 mm. Sheet size: 16 x 21 inches; 408 x 534 mm. Text on verso in Latin. Tears to right edge of sheet, and two lower edge; small portion of lower corners renewed; several short tears repaired on verso. Matted (matte size: 20.125 x 22.375 inches; 511 x 569 mm.). An excellent example. "The ancient British Isles map has been finely drawn and engraved by Mercator himself" (Shirley). Mercator's edition of Ptolemy became the standard text; it was based on the best available sources, and all of its maps were re-edited and redrawn to conform to Ptolemy's original design. As Shirley noted, "Mercator's plates in his  represent some of his best work and such was their excellence that seven further editions were printed from them."Mercator in 1540 published , the first instructional handbook in the use of the italic hand to appear outside of Italy. It was also the first work to offer instruction in the use of italic script in the engraving of maps. The maps in Mercator's Ptolemy are arguably the finest demonstrations Mercator provided in the use of italics. Moreover, "the beauty and legibility of the best sixteenth and seventeenth-century Dutch maps can be traced in large measure to Mercator's influence" (Karrow, p. 382).Shirley, , no. 141, cf. no. 123; Karrow, , pp. 376-406.HID07601242017
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