Very nice example of Andre Thevet's rare map of Europe, which appeared in his Cosmographie Universelle, published in Paris in 1575.
The map is richly embellished with sailing ships and sea monsters and retains several of the mythical islands of the Atlantic, including Frislande (which includes 6 place names), Ibira, and Enoem.
The map includes a fascinating depiction of Iceland and Greenland. The map also shows a wide-open northeast passage, above a compressed Scandinavia. It is perhaps the finest folio woodblock map of Europe published in the 16th century.
A Franciscan monk, Thevet was one of the most widely traveled Frenchmen of his day. Thevet made numerous voyages in Europe, Africa and the Near East. He held the post of Royal Cosmographer from the reign of Henry II through that of Henry III. His Cosmographie Universelle was his most extensive work.
Thevet was a staunch advocate of the theory that American Indians were the descendants of the lost tribe of Israel and was instrumental in widely propagating this theory.
The quality of Thevet's woodblock is very fine, reflecting the French finesse for woodcuts. His detail and refinement are vastly superior to the woodblock maps still being produced in other parts of Europe.
Only one state of the map is known.