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Sebastian Münster (1488-1552) was a cosmographer and professor of Hebrew who taught at Tübingen, Heidelberg, and Basel. He settled in the latter in 1529 and died there, of plague, in 1552. Münster made himself the center of a large network of scholars from whom he obtained geographic descriptions, maps, and directions.

As a young man, Münster joined the Franciscan order, in which he became a priest. He then studied geography at Tübingen, graduating in 1518. He moved to Basel, where he published a Hebrew grammar, one of the first books in Hebrew published in Germany. In 1521 Münster moved again, to Heidelberg, where he continued to publish Hebrew texts and the first German-produced books in Aramaic. After converting to Protestantism in 1529, he took over the chair of Hebrew at Basel, where he published his main Hebrew work, a two-volume Old Testament with a Latin translation.

Münster published his first known map, a map of Germany, in 1525. Three years later, he released a treatise on sundials. In 1540, he published Geographia universalis vetus et nova, an updated edition of Ptolemy’s Geographia. In addition to the Ptolemaic maps, Münster added 21 modern maps. One of Münster’s innovations was to include one map for each continent, a concept that would influence Ortelius and other early atlas makers. The Geographia was reprinted in 1542, 1545, and 1552.  

He is best known for his Cosmographia universalis, first published in 1544 and released in at least 35 editions by 1628. It was the first German-language description of the world and contained 471 woodcuts and 26 maps over six volumes. Many of the maps were taken from the Geographia and modified over time. The Cosmographia was widely used in the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries. The text, woodcuts, and maps all influenced geographical thought for generations.

Place/Date:
Basle / 1560 circa
Size:
14 x 10 inches
Condition:
VG
Stock#:
38613pb
Place/Date:
Basel / 1560 circa
Size:
14 x 9.5 inches
Condition:
VG+
Stock#:
62058
Place/Date:
Basle / 1560
Size:
7 x 9.5 inches
Condition:
VG
Stock#:
62498
Place/Date:
Basle / 1570 circa
Size:
15 x 4 inches
Condition:
VG
Stock#:
26167
Place/Date:
Basle / 1570
Size:
14 x 10 inches
Condition:
VG+
Stock#:
28443
Place/Date:
Basle / 1570 circa
Size:
28 x 10 inches
Condition:
VG
Stock#:
38390pb
Place/Date:
Basle / 1570 circa
Size:
13 x 11 inches
Condition:
VG
Stock#:
55125
Place/Date:
Basle / 1570 circa
Size:
6 x 3 inches (plus text)
Condition:
VG
Stock#:
57702
Place/Date:
Basle / 1572
Size:
15 x 12 inches
Condition:
VG
Stock#:
38853se
Place/Date:
Basle / 1579
Size:
15 x 6.5 inches
Condition:
VG+
Stock#:
0751
Place/Date:
Basle / 1579
Size:
5 x 6 inches
Condition:
VG+
Stock#:
47262
Place/Date:
Basle / 1579
Size:
13 x 10 inches
Condition:
VG
Stock#:
62199
Place/Date:
Basel / 1588 circa
Size:
12 x 14 inches
Condition:
VG
Stock#:
60709
Place/Date:
Basel / 1588 circa
Size:
14 x 12.5 inches
Condition:
VG+
Stock#:
60652
Place/Date:
London / 1598
Size:
15 x 12.5 inches
Condition:
VG
Stock#:
45242

Archived

Place/Date:
Basle / 1542
Size:
13.5 x 10 inches
Condition:
VG+
Stock#:
2383
Place/Date:
Basle / 1542
Size:
13.5 x 10 inches
Condition:
VG+
Stock#:
2384
Place/Date:
Basle / 1542
Size:
13.5 x 10 inches
Condition:
VG+
Stock#:
2385
Place/Date:
Basle / 1542
Size:
13.5 x 10 inches
Condition:
VG+
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2386
Place/Date:
Basle / 1542
Size:
13.5 x 10 inches
Condition:
VG+
Stock#:
2387
Place/Date:
Basle / 1542
Size:
13.5 x 10 inches
Condition:
VG
Stock#:
2391
Place/Date:
Basle / 1542
Size:
13.5 x 10 inches
Condition:
VG+
Stock#:
2393
Place/Date:
Venice / 1542
Size:
13.5 x 10 inches
Condition:
VG
Stock#:
20687
Place/Date:
Basel / 1542
Size:
13.5 x 10 inches
Condition:
VG
Stock#:
20684
Place/Date:
Basle / 1542
Size:
13.5 x 10 inches
Condition:
VG+
Stock#:
21387
Place/Date:
Basle / 1542
Size:
13.5 x 10 inches
Condition:
VG
Stock#:
21648
Place/Date:
Basle / 1542
Size:
14 x 10 inches
Condition:
VG
Stock#:
21655
Place/Date:
Basle / 1542
Size:
14 x 10 inches
Condition:
VG
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21656
Place/Date:
Basel / 1542
Size:
14 x 10 inches
Condition:
VG
Stock#:
21657
Place/Date:
Basle / 1542
Size:
13.5 x 10 inches
Condition:
VG+
Stock#:
21669
Place/Date:
Basel / 1542
Size:
14 x 10 inches
Condition:
VG
Stock#:
21670
Place/Date:
Basle / 1542
Size:
13.5 x 10 inches
Condition:
VG+
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21671
Place/Date:
Basle / 1542
Size:
14 x 10 inches
Condition:
VG
Stock#:
21695
Place/Date:
Basle / 1542
Size:
13.5 x 10 inches
Condition:
VG+
Stock#:
21696
Place/Date:
Basel / 1542
Size:
13.5 x 10 inches
Condition:
VG
Stock#:
21697
Place/Date:
Basle / 1542
Size:
13.5 x 10 inches
Condition:
VG+
Stock#:
21724
Place/Date:
Basle / 1542
Size:
13.5 x 10 inches
Condition:
VG+
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21725
Place/Date:
Basle / 1542
Size:
13.5 x 10 inches
Condition:
VG+
Stock#:
21726
Place/Date:
Basle / 1542
Size:
13.5 x 10 inches
Condition:
VG
Stock#:
21727
Place/Date:
Basle / 1542
Size:
14 x 10 inches
Condition:
VG
Stock#:
21748
Place/Date:
Basle / 1542
Size:
13.5 x 10 inches
Condition:
VG
Stock#:
21749
Place/Date:
Basle / 1542
Size:
13.5 x 10 inches
Condition:
VG
Stock#:
21750
Place/Date:
Venice / 1542
Size:
13.5 x 10 inches
Condition:
VG
Stock#:
21752
Place/Date:
Basle / 1542
Size:
13.5 x 10 inches
Condition:
VG
Stock#:
21766
Place/Date:
Basle / 1542
Size:
13.5 x 10 inches
Condition:
VG
Stock#:
21767
Place/Date:
Basle / 1542
Size:
13.5 x 10 inches
Condition:
VG
Stock#:
21768
Place/Date:
Basle / 1542
Size:
13.5 x 10 inches
Condition:
VG
Stock#:
21814
Place/Date:
Basle / 1542
Size:
13.5 x 10 inches
Condition:
VG
Stock#:
21813
Place/Date:
Basle / 1542
Size:
13.5 x 10 inches
Condition:
VG
Stock#:
21812
Place/Date:
Basle / 1542
Size:
13.5 x 10 inches
Condition:
VG
Stock#:
22247
Place/Date:
Basle / 1542
Size:
13.5 x 10 inches
Condition:
VG
Stock#:
22248
Place/Date:
Basle / 1542
Size:
13.5 x 10 inches
Condition:
VG+
Stock#:
22274
Place/Date:
Basle / 1542
Size:
13.5 x 10 inches
Condition:
VG+
Stock#:
22273
Place/Date:
Basle / 1542
Size:
13.5 x 10 inches
Condition:
VG+
Stock#:
22280
Place/Date:
Basle / 1542
Size:
13.5 x 10 inches
Condition:
VG
Stock#:
22284
Place/Date:
Basle / 1542
Size:
13.5 x 10 inches
Condition:
VG+
Stock#:
22295
Place/Date:
Basle / 1542
Size:
13.5 x 10 inches
Condition:
VG
Stock#:
22296
Place/Date:
Basle / 1542
Size:
13.5 x 10 inches
Condition:
VG+
Stock#:
22352
Place/Date:
Basle / 1542
Size:
14 x 10 inches
Condition:
VG
Stock#:
22438
Place/Date:
Basle / 1542
Size:
13.5 x 10 inches
Condition:
VG
Stock#:
22439
Place/Date:
Basle / 1542
Size:
13.5 x 10 inches
Condition:
VG+
Stock#:
22480
Place/Date:
Basle / 1542
Size:
13.5 x 10 inches
Condition:
VG+
Stock#:
22496
Place/Date:
Basle / 1542
Size:
13.5 x 10 inches
Condition:
VG+
Stock#:
22497
Place/Date:
Basle / 1542
Size:
13.5 x 10 inches
Condition:
VG
Stock#:
22481
Place/Date:
Basle / 1542
Size:
13.5 x 10 inches
Condition:
VG
Stock#:
22671