1618 Asiae VIII Tab
Date: 1618 (Published) Leiden
Dimensions: 13.75 x 16 inches (34.93 x 40.6 cm)
This fascinating elegant copper engraved map focuses on Central Asia east of the Caspian Sea including modern day Tajikistan, Kyrgyzstan and western China. The Himalayas and northern India form the southern border of the map. Lands of the fabled Scythians, nomads of the steppes and farther abroad - known for their prowess as master horsemen and master artisans of gold - are featured in this map.
The map includes ancient names of peoples, places and kingdoms. Culturally advanced, the Scythians dominated a vast region of southern Russia and the Crimea. As their numbers and influence grew an elite Scythian upper class evolved from which their sovereign arose. The throne was hereditary, passing to the eldest son on death of the monarch. This class of aristocrats left elaborate graves commonly known as kurgans throughout the region inhabited by them, filled with remarkably stunningly beautiful gold jewelry and other sophisticated ornamental objects of gold. The military might of the Scythians was such that they were able to repel an invasion by Darius I of Persia in about 513 BCE.
Though Gerard Mercator is best known for the projection which bears his name, he was the first to use the name Atlas for a collection of maps, and he devoted much of his life to his maps based on the work of Ptolemy. Mercator originally published this map in his 1578 edition of Ptolemy’s Great Geography.
Condition: This hand colored map is in A condition with a dark impression on a bright sheet with some minor flaws at the centerfold which have been repaired with archival materials on the verso.
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