Panel 12


This plate includes the small island of Java Minor and the mainland tip of what they refer to as India. The Spice Islands of Indonesia are variously represented but the main import of this plate is contained in the Latin legend below. Here Waldsemuller attributes the naming of America to Amerigo Vespucci. Earlier he had referred to deriving the word America from Americus to coincide with the feminine use of the words Europa and Asia.

The margins of the map are delicately festooned with colorful figures and cartouches denoting wind, sea and sky. These bear such names as Zephir, Africus, Lybonoth, Eronotus, Witurn-evrus, Subsolanus, Cecias, and Chor.

The Latin translation reads:
Although many of the ancients were interested in marking out the circle of the land, things remained unknown to them in no slight degree; for instance, in the west, America, named after its discoverer, which is to be reckoned a fourth part of the world. Another is, to the south, a part of Africa, which begins about seven degrees this side of Capricornus and stretches in a broad expanse to the south, beyond the torrid zone and the Tropic of Capricornus. A third instance, in the east, is the land of Cathay, and all of southern India beyond 180 degrees of longitude. All these we have added to the earlier known places, so that those who are fond of things of this sort may gaze upon all that is known to us of the present day, and may approve of our painstaking labors. This one request we have to make, that those who are inexperienced and unacquainted with cosmography shall not condemn all this before they have learned that it will surely be clearer to them later on, when they have come to understand it.

<-- Previous Panel

1 - Beyond The Stars2 - Ptolemy3 - Vespucci4 - Cathay
5 - Southern New World6 - Spice Trade7 - The Silk Road8 - Catigara
9 - America10 - South of Africa11 - Africa to India12 - Nutmeg and Cloves

Click on section of map for details













top of page . home . authors . mission statement . contact us . news . annals

©2001 Educare Press