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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:
Basel / 1554
Size:
30.5 x 9.5 inches
Condition:
VG+
Stock#:
86508
Place/Date:
Basle / 1554 circa
Size:
14 x 10 inches
Condition:
VG+
Stock#:
81280
Place/Date:
Basle / 1554
Size:
13.5 x 10.5 inches
Condition:
VG+
Stock#:
81281
Place/Date:
Basel / 1554 circa
Size:
13.5 x 10.5 inches
Condition:
VG+
Stock#:
81282
Place/Date:
Basel / 1554
Size:
14 x 10.5 inches
Condition:
VG+
Stock#:
81283
Place/Date:
Basle / 1554
Size:
13.5 x 10 inches
Condition:
VG
Stock#:
77361
Place/Date:
Basle / 1554
Size:
15 x 11 inches
Condition:
VG
Stock#:
77358
Place/Date:
Basel / 1554 circa
Size:
12 x 10 inches
Condition:
VG+
Stock#:
81286
Place/Date:
Basle / 1554
Size:
6.5 x 10 inches Including Text
Condition:
VG
Stock#:
73700
Place/Date:
Basle / 1554
Size:
7 x 10.5 inches
Condition:
VG+
Stock#:
87154
Place/Date:
Basle / 1552 circa
Size:
14 x 10.5 inches
Condition:
VG+
Stock#:
70181mp2
Place/Date:
Basel / 1552
Size:
13.5 x 10.5 inches
Condition:
VG+
Stock#:
80544
Place/Date:
Basle / 1552
Size:
15 x 11.5 inches
Condition:
VG+
Stock#:
80526
Place/Date:
Basle / 1552 circa
Size:
14.5 x 11.5 inches
Condition:
VG+
Stock#:
75727
Place/Date:
Basle / 1552
Size:
16 x 11.5 inches
Condition:
VG
Stock#:
77566
Place/Date:
Basle / 1552
Size:
15 x 11.5 inches
Condition:
VG+
Stock#:
77567
Place/Date:
Basle / 1552
Size:
15 x 11.5 inches
Condition:
VG+
Stock#:
75746
Place/Date:
Basle / 1552
Size:
15 x 11.5 inches
Condition:
VG+
Stock#:
73952
Place/Date:
Basel / 1552 circa
Size:
14 x 12 inches
Condition:
VG
Stock#:
81273
Place/Date:
Basel / 1550 circa
Size:
15.5 x 10 inches
Condition:
VG+
Stock#:
64103
Place/Date:
Basel / 1550 circa
Size:
13.5 x 10.5 inches
Condition:
VG
Stock#:
72088
Place/Date:
Basle / 1550
Size:
13.5 x 10.5 inches
Condition:
VG
Stock#:
81267
Place/Date:
Basel / 1550
Size:
6.5 x 10.5 inches
Condition:
VG+
Stock#:
75024
Place/Date:
Basel / 1550 circa
Size:
13.5 x 10.5 inches
Condition:
VG+
Stock#:
81271
Place/Date:
Basel / 1550 circa
Size:
13.5 x 10.5 inches
Condition:
VG
Stock#:
81292
Place/Date:
Basel / 1550 circa
Size:
13.5 x 10.5 inches
Condition:
VG+
Stock#:
81287
Place/Date:
Basle / 1550
Size:
7 x 10 inches Including Text
Condition:
VG
Stock#:
77251
Place/Date:
Basel / 1550
Size:
15 x 10 inches Including Text
Condition:
VG
Stock#:
77299
Place/Date:
Basel / 1550 circa
Size:
13.5 x 10 inches
Condition:
VG
Stock#:
77668
Place/Date:
Basle / 1550 circa
Size:
14.8 x 10.8 inches (including text)
Condition:
VG
Stock#:
77890
Place/Date:
Basle / 1550 circa
Size:
6 x 10 inches
Condition:
VG
Stock#:
78197
Place/Date:
Basel / 1550
Size:
13.5 x 10.5 inches (including text)
Condition:
Stock#:
78339
Place/Date:
Basel / 1550 circa
Size:
6 x 4.25 inches
Condition:
VG
Stock#:
78391
Place/Date:
Basel / 1550 circa
Size:
14.25 x 10 inches (including text)
Condition:
VG
Stock#:
78765
Place/Date:
Basel / 1550 circa
Size:
15.5 x 10 inches Including Text
Condition:
VG+
Stock#:
78805
Place/Date:
Basel / 1550 circa
Size:
15.25 x 10 inches (including text)
Condition:
VG
Stock#:
78931
Place/Date:
Venice / 1545
Size:
13.5 x 10.5 inches
Condition:
VG
Stock#:
74672
Place/Date:
Basle / 1545
Size:
13.5 x 10.5 inches
Condition:
VG
Stock#:
75698

Archived

Place/Date:
Basle / 1588 circa
Size:
14.5 x 12 inches
Condition:
VG
Stock#:
26404
Place/Date:
Basel / 1588 circa
Size:
14 x 12 inches
Condition:
VG
Stock#:
26412
Place/Date:
Basle / 1588 circa
Size:
14 x 12 inches
Condition:
VG
Stock#:
26424
Place/Date:
Basle / 1588 circa
Size:
7 x 3 inches
Condition:
VG
Stock#:
27397
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Basle / 1588 circa
Size:
8 x 6 inches
Condition:
VG
Stock#:
27478
Place/Date:
Basel / 1588
Size:
14 x 12 inches
Condition:
VG
Stock#:
27507
Place/Date:
Basle / 1588
Size:
14 x 12.5 inches
Condition:
VG
Stock#:
27533
Place/Date:
Basle / 1588
Size:
14.5 x 12.5 inches
Condition:
VG
Stock#:
27614
Place/Date:
Basle / 1588 circa
Size:
14 x 12 inches
Condition:
VG
Stock#:
0212gh
Place/Date:
Basel / 1588 circa
Size:
14 x 10 inches
Condition:
VG
Stock#:
0262gh
Place/Date:
Basel / 1588 circa
Size:
14 x 12 inches
Condition:
VG+
Stock#:
35271
Place/Date:
Basel / 1588 circa
Size:
14.5 x 12.5 inches
Condition:
VG
Stock#:
40145
Place/Date:
Basel / 1588 circa
Size:
14.5 x 12.5 inches
Condition:
VG+
Stock#:
38578
Place/Date:
Basle / 1588 circa
Size:
14 x 12 inches
Condition:
VG
Stock#:
46807
Place/Date:
Basle / 1588 circa
Size:
14 x 12 inches
Condition:
VG
Stock#:
46954
Place/Date:
Basle / 1588 circa
Size:
14 x 12 inches
Condition:
VG
Stock#:
54283
Place/Date:
Basel / 1588 circa
Size:
14 x 12.5 inches
Condition:
VG
Stock#:
54355
Place/Date:
Basel / 1588 circa
Size:
14 x 12.5 inches
Condition:
VG
Stock#:
59766
Place/Date:
Basle / 1588 circa
Size:
14 x 12 inches
Condition:
VG+
Stock#:
57833
Place/Date:
Basel / 1588 circa
Size:
14 x 12.5 inches
Condition:
VG
Stock#:
57843
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:
Basle / 1588
Size:
14 x 10 inches
Condition:
VG+
Stock#:
60542
Place/Date:
Basel / 1588 circa
Size:
12 x 14 inches
Condition:
VG+
Stock#:
61888
Place/Date:
Basel / 1588
Size:
14 x 12.5 inches
Condition:
VG+
Stock#:
67193
Place/Date:
Basle / 1584
Size:
5.5 x 4 inches (plus text)
Condition:
VG
Stock#:
21470
Place/Date:
Basle / 1584
Size:
6 x 4 inches (plus text)
Condition:
VG
Stock#:
21821
Place/Date:
Basle / 1584
Size:
6 x 4 inches (plus text)
Condition:
VG
Stock#:
22028
Place/Date:
Basle / 1580 circa
Size:
14 x 10 inches
Condition:
VG
Stock#:
26201
Place/Date:
Basle / 1580 circa
Size:
6.5 x 5 inches
Condition:
VG
Stock#:
26532
Place/Date:
Basel / 1580 circa
Size:
13.5 x 10 inches
Condition:
VG
Stock#:
40108
Place/Date:
Basel / 1580 circa
Size:
14.5 x 12.5 inches
Condition:
VG
Stock#:
40862
Place/Date:
Basel / 1580 circa
Size:
14.5 x 12.5 inches
Condition:
VG+
Stock#:
46761
Place/Date:
Basle / 1580 circa
Size:
5.5 x 4 inches (plus text)
Condition:
VG
Stock#:
53357
Place/Date:
Basel / 1580 circa
Size:
14.5 x 12.5 inches
Condition:
VG+
Stock#:
60736
Place/Date:
Basel / 1580 circa
Size:
14 x 12.5 inches
Condition:
VG
Stock#:
62332
Place/Date:
Basle / 1580
Size:
14 x 12 inches
Condition:
VG+
Stock#:
63804
Place/Date:
Basle / 1579
Size:
6.5 x 4 inches
Condition:
VG+
Stock#:
0730
Place/Date:
Basle / 1579
Size:
9.5 x 6.5 inches
Condition:
VG+
Stock#:
0733