Sign In

- Or use -
Forgot Password Create Account

There are several extant manuscript maps of Spain that date to the mid-fifteenth century and adopt non-Ptolemaic style and content. Although scattered across Europe today, they all seem to have originated in Florence. The earliest printed non-Ptolemaic map of Iberia is Berlingheri's Hispania Novella, first published in the 1482 Berlingheri edition of Ptolemy's Geography (Florence). Maps similar to Berlingheri's, and related to the content of the Florence manuscript maps, were also inlcuded in the Ulm-edition of Ptolemy, (1482),  as well as in other editions: Rome (1507), Waldseemuller (1513), Fries (1522) and Münster (1540). 

There were attempts within Spain itself to create a modern depiction of their geography. A systematic survey was attempted as early as 1517 by the King of Spain, who commissioned Christopher Columbus' son Fernan Colon to undertake this work as part of a description and cosmography of Spain. However, no separate map was published as part of this work.

By the 1530s, Berlingheri's map was no longer the standard reference for the peninsula. Instead, G. A. Vavassore published a new map in Venice in 1532. There is only one known example of the map, at Harvard, with a photostatic copy at the British Museum. A woodcut map, the source of Vavassore's map is not known with certainty. However, it is generally attributed to the work of Vincentius Corsulensis. Corsulensis, in turn, has been identified as Fra Vincenzo Paletino of Curzola.

The first large-format, widely-disbursed map of Spain was the four-sheet map created by Giacomo Gastaldi in 1544. This was Gastaldi's earliest known map. Gastaldi, who was unquestionably the most important map publisher of his time, credited source material received from Don Diego Hurtado de Mendoza, who was then serving as Carlos V's ambassador to Venice.

Interestingly, not many mapmakers adapted the Gastaldi map in their own work. Instead, they preferred another map by Corsulensis, a six-sheet map published in 1551. Only one example of this map survives, in the Doria Atlas. Matheo Pagano created an early copy of the map, in 1558, although no example of Pagano's map is known to survive. The map was again copied by Hieronymous Cock in 1553. 

Flemish mapmaker Thomas Geminus (then resident in London) published a four-sheet map of Spain in 1555, the earliest map of Spain published in England. Geminus' map, which was a Corsulensis derivative, in turn inspired a 1559 map by the Pirro Ligorio (published by Michael Tramezzino and engraved by Sebastiano del Re), and a two-sheet map of the same year by Vincenzo Luchini. Other Corsulensis-derived maps inlcude those of Paolo Forlani (1560), Zenoni (ca. 1560), and Henricus Van Schoel (Camocio) (1602).

Another map that included the whole of the Iberian Peninsula was Enea Vico's map of 1542 illustrating the theater of the Franco-Hapsburg War. That map was copied by a number of other publishers from 1544.

The last of the major sixteenth-century maps of the peninsula was compiled by the French botanist Charles de l'Escluse (Carolus Clusius), whose map was compiled and printed on six sheets by Abraham Ortelius in 1570. It was later re-issued in Paris in 1606 and again in 1696. Hessel Gerritsz also created a monumental wall map of Iberia in 1612; this was engraved and printed in 1615.