Guide To Medieval and Renaissance Manuscripts in the Huntington Library


HM 44

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BARTOLOMEU VELHO, PORTOLAN ATLAS
Portugal, ca. 1560
World atlas containing 16 nautical charts, tables of declinations, etc.: 1. f. 1: Tables of solar declinations 2. f. 1v: Tables of solar declinations and cosmographical data, as described in PMC 2:108-09 and reproduced on pl. 236 3. f. 2: Western coast of United States and Mexico 4. f. 2v: South America (southern portion) 5. f. 3: Central America and northwest coast of South America 6. f. 3v: West Indies and surrounding coasts 7. f. 4: North Atlantic Ocean, Newfoundland, Ireland 8. f. 4v: Northern South America, portion of West Indies, Newfoundland 9. f. 5: Eastern Mediterranean and Black Sea 10. f. 5v: Spain and Portugal, west coast of Africa 11. f. 6: Western and central Europe (including Iceland and Scandinavia) and northwestern Africa 12. f. 6v: Western Africa and Gulf of Guinea 13. f. 7: India, Arabia, and portion of eastern Africa 14. f. 7v: Southeast coast of Africa and islands of Indian Ocean 15. f. 8: Southwest coast of Africa and southern Atlantic Ocean 16. f. 8v: Brazil and southern Atlantic Ocean 17. f. 9: Indochina and East Indies 18. f. 9v: Japan and portion of East Indies Parchment, ff. iii (3 modern parchment with 1 early modern paper affixed to first parchment sheet) + 9 + i (modern parchment with early paper affixed to back); 440 × 330 (406 × 302) mm. Bifolia arranged sequentially. Double banded purple border. Foliated with 2 early numbering systems in arabic numerals in ink and modern pencilled numbering (one bifolium has been reversed so that modern numbering for 7 to 8v is in reverse order of the original numbering). Black and red ink for nomenclature in a minuscule script with area names in square capitals; land masses outlined in color, islands painted blue, green, red, or gold; 1 to 5 compass roses on each chart (except 5v, which has none); usual 32 rhumb line network in black, red, and green ink for the principal directions; numbered latitude scale on each chart, but no longitude; unnumbered scale of distance in small cartouche on each chart (except on 5v and 6, where French words and numbers appear to have been added later); coats of arms identifying some areas, but no illustrations except for vignettes of 3 cities. Unbound: encased in nineteenth-century English blind tooled red morocco cover; the bifolia, now loose but which appear at one time to have been bound, are fastened to case by a guard along fold. Made in Portugal in the second half of the sixteenth century, with additions on ff. 2, 5v and 6 probably made later in France. The early endpapers affixed to modern parchment front and back bear oval ownership stamp with laurel wreath surrounding initials AY (?); owned by Henry Stevens (1791-1867); sale of his library, 1868, to Henry Huth (1815-78); his ex libris on front pastedown and pencilled notation “Portolano (6) p. 1171” indicating The Huth Library (1880) pt. 4, 1171; pencilled “H 5918” on pastedown for sale of Alfred Henry Huth (1850-1910), Sotheby’s, 11 July 1917, pt. VI, n. 5918 to G. D. Smith from whom it was acquired by Henry E. Huntington. Bibliography: Cortesão, Cartografia, 1:170, with reproduction of chart 6 in vol. 2, pl. 53. De Ricci, 44. Wagner, Cartography, 2:294, n. 210. Wagner, Portolan Atlases, 44. Ganong, 493. PMC, 2:107-09, with all tables and charts reproduced on pls. 227-36 (chart f. 2v in color).
Abbreviations
Cortesão, Cartografia
A. Cortesão, Cartografia e cartógrafos portugueses dos séculos XV e XVI (Lisbon 1935)
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)
Ganong
W. F. Ganong, Crucial Maps in the Early Cartography and Place-Nomenclature of the Atlantic Coast of Canada [Toronto 1964]
PMC
A. Cortesão and A. Teixeira da Mota, Portugaliae monumenta cartographica (Lisbon 1960-[62])
The Huth Library
The Huth Library: a Catalogue of the Printed Books, Manuscripts, Autograph Letters, and Engravings Collected by Henry Huth (London 1880)
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

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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