Friday, March 7, 2014

The First Map of Africa - Josh Marshall // Talking Points Memo

This is a pretty good job - though not long after things got a lot better.  The Portuguese had rounded Cape of Good Hope and would soon be building forts and schools on the west coast of the Indian sub-continent; and landing Jesuit missionaries in Macao in 1579.  Josh has more to say so click though on this link. - GWC

Artifacts #1: The First Map of Africa

by Josh Marshall

"This is believed to be the first map of Africa, as a continent. "Africa" was originally a Roman term for the region of modern Tunisia and the western portion of Libya. The Arabs later adopted a similar definition. But this is the first known map of the new concept of Africa as a continent stretching from North Africa down to a southern tip that could be rounded and from which you could then sail on to India and Asia.

The map is the work of Sebastian Munster (1489-1552), a professor of Hebrew at the University of Basel. This is mid-16th century, so going on 60 years after Europeans first rounded the Cape of Good Hope to Asia, though the Portuguese had been exploring the western coast of Africa a good deal longer.  Still more remarkable is this Abraham Ortelius map from only 30 years later. Published at Antwerp in 1584."

'via Blog this'