BORDONE, Benedetto (d.1531)
Isolario di Benedetto Bordone Nel qual si ragiona di tutte l'Isole del mondo, con li lor nomi antichi & moderni, historie, favole, & modi del loro vivere, & in qual parte del mare stanno, & in qual parallelo & clima giaciono. Con la gionta del Monte del Oro novamente ritrovato
Venice: Nicolò d'Aristotile detto Zoppino, 1534. Small folio. (11 1/2 x 8 inches). Letterpress title in red and black with ornamental woodcut border, woodcut initials. 1 full-page diagram of a world map and windroses, 4 woodcut double-page or folding maps of the World, Venice, the Eastern Mediterranean and the Venetian Archipelago, 4 smaller double-page maps of Sicily, Crete, Cyprus and Euboea, 103 woodcut maps and plans scattered through the text. With an early manuscript inscription in Italian on a small piece of paper tipped to the inner margin of D1.
Expertly bound to style in contemporary vellum
Early edition of this important geographical compendium with important New World maps and the earliest description in book form of Pizarro's conquest of Peru.
The author Bordone, born in Padua, worked in Venice as a geographer, cartographer, illuminator and wood-engraver. It is believed that he was the creator of the first globe printed in Italy. First published by Nicolò d'Aristotile detto Zoppino in 1528 under the title Libro di Benedetto Bordone nel qual si ragiona de tutte l'isole del mondo , the present work, the second edition overall, marks the first appearance of the new title. The publisher re-used the same wood-blocks for the maps. An Aldine edition with the same title but different woodblocks followed in 1547.
This work offers an illustrated guide to islands and peninsulas of the western ocean, the Mediterranean, the Indian Ocean and the Far East. As a cartographic form, Bordone's Isolario derives from two manuscript prototypes, Buondelmonti's Liber insularum Archipelagi of 1420 and Da Li Sonetti's Isolario of about 1485, whose maps were also drawn with eight windrays to establish orientation. Ptolemy's Geographia and nautical charts of the period are another source.
This work is notable for its wide scope, spreading beyond the European/Western bounds of the well-known into the newly-discovered areas in the Americas. In addition to text which includes the first mention in book form of Pizarro's triumph, the maps of the area are also particularly important. These include a plan of the city of Mexico ("Temistitan"), showing it before its conquest by Cortes. The "Terra de Lavoratore" map on the verso of leaf VI contains what is considered the first printed map of continental North America. The verso of leaf XII contains a map of Hispaniola, and the following leaf bears a map of Jamaica on the recto and of Cuba on the verso. Other Caribbean islands depicted by maps include Guadeloupe, Dominica, and Martinique.
Also of importance are the four double-page/folding maps: the World (one of the earliest oval projection world maps); Europe and north Africa; the eastern Mediterranean; and Venice and the surrounding lagoon. This work also includes one of the earliest European representations of Japan. The remaining majority of the maps illustrate islands in the Eastern Mediterranean.
BM Italian p.120; Borba de Moraes I, p.112; Brunet I, 112; European Americana 534/2; Harrisse Bav 187; JCB (3) 1:112; cf. Mortimer Italian 82; Phillips Atlases 162; Sabin 6419; R.A.Skelton Introduction to Libro... de Tutte L'Isole Del Mondo (Amsterdam: Theatrum Orbis Terrarum Ltd, 1966).