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The Kraus Map Collection


Kraus 16, Sketch for a map of Germany (Between 1645 and 1650)

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Title   Sketch for a map of Germany
Cartographer   Mercator, Rumold (ca. 1545 - 1599)
Subject   Germany--Maps
Publisher   Unpublished
Repository   Harry Ransom Humanities Research Center
Place of publication
     or creation
Date(s)   Between 1645 and 1650
Format   Printed map
Kraus catalog no.   16
Dimensions in mm.   490 x 590 mm.
Rights   No known U.S. copyright restrictions. Please cite the Harry Ransom Center, University of Texas at Austin, as the image source.


Manuscript, divided into 12 fields. Outlines and names in ink, dividing lines in red crayon. (Gap in upper part, due to folding; light waterstain.) From the Hauslab-Liechtenstein Collection. Matted. Folio (490 x 590 mm.).

The map sketches Germany, with the Mare Germanicum and the Mare Balticum in the North, and with parts of the surrounding countries: England, Denmark (partly obliterated), Poland, Livonia, Austria, Switzerland, Alsace, Lorraine, France (Normandy), Flanders and Holland. Except for very sketchy outlines of the Dutch and English coasts, of the Zuyder Sea and the Bodensee, this manuscript map consists of geographical names only; the writing is mostly Gothic cursive for the German provinces, Latin names (Anglia, Polonia, etc.) are in Roman cursive letters. The map is divided by red crayon in 12 roughly identical zones, evidently as guidelines for a projected 12 sheet wall-map.

The sketch can be dated into the first half of the 17th century, more particularly after 1645, for the following reason: North of Brandenburg and west of Pomerellia we find the designation of "Schweden", probably referring to the fact that Pomerania became a Swedish possession after the treaty of Osnabrück in 1645. The paper bears a fine armorial watermark with a pine cone (the Augsburg arms), with the letters MM at the top and the letter A at the bottom.(1) The MM most probably stands for the Augsburg paper maker Matthaeus Mair who was active between 1598 and c. 1630,2 the A for Augsburg. We were unable to find any record of a 12 sheet Germany map of this time, for which the present map may have been a guiding sketch. However, there might be some connection with the 12 sheet Tabula Germaniae by Rumold Mercator,(3) which was revised and published by Blaeu in 1634 and 1659.(4) The original edition (1590) as well as both Blaeu editions are each known in a unique copy only (see No. 8 in this catalogue). One could assume that the present sketch was used as a preliminary guide for the 1659 edition, even though it was printed in six instead of the originally planned twelve sheets.

Notes :
1. Briquet 2118 shows the same watermark, except for the letters "MM" which, however appear on a smaller watermark of the same Augsburg arms (Briquet 2119). Cf. also Labarre (ed.), the Nostitz Papers, p. 44.

2. Haemmerle, "Die Augsburger Papiermuehlen", in: Vierteljahrsbefie zur Iiunst und Geschichte Augsburgs, III, p. 138.

3. Averdunk and Mueller-Reinhard, G. Mercator und die Geographer, unter seinen Nachkommen, pp. 155/156.

4. Wolkenhauer, "Deutschland im Kartenbild", in: Deutsche Geograph. Blaetter, Vol. 39 (1919), p. 9; Ortroy, Bibliog. Mercatorienne, pp. 71/72; Wieder, Monumenta Cartographica, III, nos. 64 and 92.