Guide To Medieval and Renaissance Manuscripts in the Huntington Library


HM 27

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BATTISTA AGNESE, PORTOLAN ATLAS
Venice, 1553
World atlas containing 10 nautical charts, table of declinations, etc.: 1. f. 1v: Circular calendar 2. f. 2v: Table of declinations 3. f. 3: Armillary sphere 4. ff. 3v-4: Zodiac with small Atlantic hemisphere in center with a central cord to be used as a pointer 5. ff. 4v-5: Pacific Ocean with portions of North America, South America, Asia, and East Indies 6. ff. 5v-6: Atlantic Ocean with portions of North America, South America, Europe, and Africa 7. ff. 6v-7: Indian Ocean, Africa, southern Asia, and portion of East Indies 8. ff. 7v-8: British Isles, France, and northern Spain 9. ff. 8v-9: Iberian peninsula and northwest Africa 10. ff. 9v-10: Western Mediterranean and Italy 11. ff. 10v-11: Eastern Mediterranean, Italy, and Aegean Sea 12. ff. 11v-12: Black Sea 13. ff. 12v-13: Aegean Sea 14. ff. 13v-14: Oval map of the world (showing one route: around the world via the Moluccas) 15. f. 14v: Ruling for calendar Parchment, ff. 14 (13 sheets folded in center and pasted back to back); 369 × 271 mm. (map size, 288 × 460 mm. on double page openings). Bifolia attached sequentially. Single ruled black borders. Original foliation in arabic numerals. Black and red ink for nomenclature in a minuscule script with square capitals as display script; land masses outlined in blue ink with islands painted gold, green, or red; each chart has one simple compass rose, with the exception of chart ff. 10v-11 (which has none) and the usual 32 rhumb line network in black, red, and green ink for the principal directions; latitude and longitude are indicated by numbers on charts ff. 4v-5, 5v-6, 6v-7 and latitude only on ff. 7v-8 and 8v-9, while formalized latitude scales are added on ff. 7v-8, 8v-9 and 9v-10; distance is indicated by series of dots, or dots and circles, placed diagonally across one corner of each chart; charts are more decorated than the other Agnese atlases at this Library, having many vignettes of cities, forests, mountains, rivers, and, on chart ff. 13v-14, 12 wind-heads. Bound, s. XVI, in Italian red morocco over wooden boards, with gold tooled designs front and back, 4 clasps; inside back binding is a hole cut to hold a compass to operate with the wind-rose drawn on pastedown. Inscribed on f. 8, “Baptista agnese fecit venetiis anno domini 1553, die viii Iulii.” On f. 2, erased arms (?), French, s. XVIex: argent a chevron (?). On front flyleaf, a note in Latin and French giving author and date of manuscript; on front pastedown, “No. 19901”; “845 MC” pencilled on front pastedown indicates the Gerard Meerman sale, The Hague, 1824, pt. IV, n. 845 to Sir Thomas Phillipps. Phillipps’ Middle Hill stamp on front flyleaf with numbers “1912 & 24051” and note on pastedown stating “This was part of lot 845 in the Meerman Sale and should have been placed with other volume under Phillipps MS 1912, T[homas] F[itzroy] F[enwick].” Obtained privately through A. S. W. Rosenbach by Henry E. Huntington in 1924. Bibliography: J. Winsor, “Baptista Agnese and American cartography in the sixteenth century,” Proceedings Mass. Hist. Soc., 2d ser., 11 (May 1897) 377. Wagner, “Manuscript Atlases of Battista Agnese,” 90-91. De Ricci, 40-41. Wagner, Cartography, 2:279, n. 27. Wagner, Portolan Atlases, 5. PAC, 114-15, n. 378.
Abbreviations
De Ricci
S. De Ricci, with the assistance of W. H. Wilson, Census of Medieval and Renaissance Manuscripts in the United States and Canada (New York 1935-37; index 1940)
PAC
Canada. Public Archives. Sixteenth-Century Maps Relating to Canada; a check-list and bibliography (Ottawa 1956)
Wagner, Cartography
H. R. Wagner, The Cartography of the Northwest Coast of America to the Year 1800 (Berkeley 1937)
Wagner, Portolan Atlases
H. R. Wagner, “The Portolan Atlases of American Interest in the Henry E. Huntington Library and Art Gallery” in Essays offered to Herbert Putnam, ed. by W. W. Bishop and A. Keogh (New Haven 1929) 498-509; repr. issued separately cited in this catalogue
Wagner, “The Manuscript Atlases of Battista Agnese”
H. R. Wagner, “The Manuscript Atlases of Battista Agnese,” Papers of the Bibliographical Society of America 25 (1931) 1-110 and plates

C. W. Dutschke with the assistance of R. H. Rouse et al., Guide to Medieval and Renaissance Manuscripts in the Huntington Library (San Marino, 1989). Copyright 1989.
Henry E. Huntington Library and Art Gallery, San Marino, California.
Electronic version encoded by Sharon K, Goetz, 2003.
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