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Descrittione Del l’Isola d’Islandia by Porcacchi, Icleand : HJB Maps

1572 Descrittione Del l’Isola d’Islandia

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By: Tomasa Porcacchi, engraved by Girolamo Porro

Date: 1572 (circa)

Dimensions: 10.25 x 6.5 inches (26 cm x 16.5 cm)

This early map of Iceland by Italian cartographer Tomasa Porcacchi is a fascinating depiction of the island as it was described by early explorers’ accounts on their return to Europe. An intriguing feature of the map is that were it to be inverted, its outlines would follow very closely the true shape of the island as reflected in satellite images of it, or in other words were the compass rose to be inversed, the map would more accurately convey the reality of Iceland’s shorelines. The compass rose of the map points ever so slightly east of true north. Six clusters of medieval-style buildings represent the centers of population of the day. Porcacchi clearly depicts and names the volcano Eyjafjalla, which today is covered by an ice cap covering the caldera of the volcano, whose summit elevation is 5,417 feet (1,651 meters). Eyjafjalla has erupted relatively frequently since the last glacial period, most recently in 2010. In the mid-eastern interior of the island is depicted what may well be an area of geothermal features which is active today. Italian text below the map and on the verso describes Iceland in some detail. Many of the small islands surrounding Iceland proper are also depicted. Condition: This map is in B condition. There is some soiling of the edges of the page, but not the map itself.

Condition: This map is in B condition. There is some soiling of the edges of the page, but not the map itself.

Inventory #10844

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