Martin Wäldseemüller. [Tabula Superioris Indiae & Tartariae maioris.], Vienne: Gaspar Trechsel, 1541.
Woodcut, trapezoid, printed area (at most) 290 x 460mm.
A very important map of China, the first 'modern' map of the region, which includes Tibet, Tartary and Japan. Although it was published in an edition of Ptolemy's 'Geographia', it was not a deduction of a map from the Wäldseemüller editions of 1513, but a new one prepared for a new 'Chronica mundi' being written by Wäldseemüller. First published in 1522, this example comes from the last edition.
He expanded the Ptolemaic map by adding information on Tartary and Japan gleaned from the accounts of Marco Polo. Japan is a large island called Zipangri, a name derived from the Chinese 'Land of the Rising Sun', which Polo learned about from the Chinese. The first recorded European visit to Japan was the year after publication, the landing of the Portuguese Alvarado in Okinawa, 1542.
The title, as above, is on the reverse, with a descriptive text in Latin.
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