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Carta prima Generale dell’Asia by Robert Dudley, published between 1646 and 1661
This map describes the Persian Gulf, going east through India to the south eastern coast of China showing Macau and the area of present day Hong Kong. The map goes south through the Philippines, passing through Borneo, the western part of Celebes (now Sulawesu, Indonesia). It also includes the Maldives and the Chagos Archipelago.
Sir Robert Dudley was the illegitimate son of the Earl of Leicester, who settled in Florence at the court of Cosmo II, having abandoned England after ligation seeking to prove his legitimacy was unsuccessful.
In Florence he completed his principal work Dell'arcano del Mare (or Arcano del Mare), 1646. The atlas is considered to be the first sea atlas completed by an Englishman, the first to consistently use Mercator’s true direction projection, and to show harbours, anchorages and to give magnetic declination. Source: Tooley, Mapping of Australia and Antarctica.
Click on the map to go to the State Library of New South Wales’ catalogue record for this item and view a superb digitised image of this wonderful new acquisition.