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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 / 1570 circa
Size:
6 x 4 inches (image only)
Condition:
VG
Stock#:
65062
Place/Date:
Basle / 1544
Size:
15 x 11 inches
Condition:
VG
Stock#:
54182
Place/Date:
Basle / 1537
Size:
21.5 x 14 inches
Condition:
VG
Stock#:
57814
Place/Date:
Basle / 1545
Size:
13.5 x 10 inches
Condition:
VG+
Stock#:
60416
Place/Date:
Basle / 1550 circa
Size:
13.5 x 10 inches
Condition:
VG+
Stock#:
30310
Place/Date:
Basel / 1542
Size:
14 x 10 inches
Condition:
VG
Stock#:
60226
Place/Date:
Basel / 1545
Size:
14 x 10 inches
Condition:
VG
Stock#:
57301
Place/Date:
Basle / 1542
Size:
13.5 x 10 inches
Condition:
VG+
Stock#:
62810
Place/Date:
Basle / 1540
Size:
13.5 x 10 inches
Condition:
VG+
Stock#:
60649
Place/Date:
Basle / 1545
Size:
13.5 x 10 inches
Condition:
VG
Stock#:
56250
Place/Date:
Basle / 1544 circa
Size:
13.5 x 10 inches
Condition:
VG
Stock#:
0125gh
Place/Date:
Basle / 1542
Size:
13.5 x 10 inches
Condition:
VG
Stock#:
60925
Place/Date:
Basle / 1542
Size:
13.5 x 10 inches
Condition:
VG+
Stock#:
60588
Place/Date:
Basle / 1542
Size:
13.5 x 10 inches
Condition:
VG
Stock#:
48947
Place/Date:
Basle / 1545
Size:
13.5 x 10 inches
Condition:
VG
Stock#:
57539
Place/Date:
Basle / 1542
Size:
13.5 x 10 inches
Condition:
VG
Stock#:
21698
Place/Date:
Basle / 1572
Size:
15 x 12 inches
Condition:
VG
Stock#:
38853se
Place/Date:
Basel / 1550
Size:
13.5 x 10 inches
Condition:
VG
Stock#:
64949
Place/Date:
Basle / 1542
Size:
14 x 10 inches
Condition:
VG+
Stock#:
60175
Place/Date:
Basle / 1570 circa
Size:
13 x 11 inches
Condition:
VG
Stock#:
55125
Place/Date:
Basel / 1545
Size:
13.5 x 10.5 inches
Condition:
VG
Stock#:
57236
Place/Date:
Basle / 1579
Size:
15 x 6.5 inches
Condition:
VG+
Stock#:
0751
Place/Date:
London / 1598
Size:
15 x 12.5 inches
Condition:
VG
Stock#:
45242
Place/Date:
Basel / 1554
Size:
15 x 10.5 inches
Condition:
VG
Stock#:
65882
Place/Date:
Basle / 1545
Size:
13 x 10.5 inches
Condition:
VG
Stock#:
57326
Place/Date:
Basle / 1542
Size:
13.5 x 10 inches
Condition:
VG+
Stock#:
60195
Place/Date:
Basle / 1550 circa
Size:
13.5 x 10 inches
Condition:
VG
Stock#:
58846
Place/Date:
Basle / 1542
Size:
13.5 x 10 inches
Condition:
VG
Stock#:
60669
Place/Date:
Basle / 1542
Size:
13.5 x 10 inches
Condition:
VG
Stock#:
60350
Place/Date:
Basle / 1545
Size:
14 x 10 inches
Condition:
VG+
Stock#:
65107
Place/Date:
Basel / 1570 circa
Size:
5 x 6 inches Second image (6 x 5)
Condition:
Good
Stock#:
65810
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:
Basel / 1560 circa
Size:
14.5 x 12.5 inches
Condition:
VG+
Stock#:
27712
Place/Date:
Basle / 1570 circa
Size:
6 x 3 inches (plus text)
Condition:
VG
Stock#:
57702
Place/Date:
Basle / 1560 circa
Size:
14 x 10 inches
Condition:
VG
Stock#:
38613pb
Place/Date:
Basle / 1542
Size:
13.5 x 10 inches
Condition:
VG
Stock#:
60298

Archived

Place/Date:
Basle / 1570
Size:
6.5 x 5 inches
Condition:
VG
Stock#:
2426
Place/Date:
Basle / 1570
Size:
12 x 8 inches
Condition:
VG
Stock#:
2449
Place/Date:
Basle / 1570
Size:
14 x 10 inches
Condition:
VG
Stock#:
2462
Place/Date:
Basle / 1584
Size:
5.5 x 4 inches (plus text)
Condition:
VG
Stock#:
21470
Place/Date:
Basle / 1580 circa
Size:
5.5 x 4 inches (plus text)
Condition:
VG
Stock#:
53357
Place/Date:
Basle / 1550
Size:
15 x 8 inches
Condition:
VG
Stock#:
21181
Place/Date:
Basle / 1584
Size:
6 x 4 inches (plus text)
Condition:
VG
Stock#:
21821
Place/Date:
Basle / 1570 circa
Size:
6 x 4 inches (plus text)
Condition:
VG
Stock#:
26713
Place/Date:
Basle / 1570 circa
Size:
8 x 6 inches
Condition:
VG+
Stock#:
26767
Place/Date:
Basle / 1579
Size:
5 x 3 inches
Condition:
VG
Stock#:
20872
Place/Date:
Basel / 1579
Size:
6 x 5 inches
Condition:
VG
Stock#:
20857
Place/Date:
Basle / 1570
Size:
7 x 6 inches
Condition:
VG+
Stock#:
3797
Place/Date:
Basle / 1560 circa
Size:
8.5 x 13.5 inches (sheet size)
Condition:
VG
Stock#:
57537
Place/Date:
Basle / 1579
Size:
6.5 x 4 inches
Condition:
VG+
Stock#:
10972
Place/Date:
Basle / 1560 circa
Size:
6.5 x 4 inches
Condition:
VG+
Stock#:
26130
Place/Date:
Basle / 1560 circa
Size:
6.5 x 4 inches
Condition:
VG+
Stock#:
30253
Place/Date:
Basle / 1579
Size:
5 x 3 inches
Condition:
VG+
Stock#:
9596
Place/Date:
Basle / 1579
Size:
8 x 7 inches
Condition:
VG+
Stock#:
0737
Place/Date:
Basle / 1570
Size:
9.5 x 7 inches
Condition:
VG
Stock#:
10956
Place/Date:
Basle / 1579
Size:
11.5 x 6.5 inches
Condition:
VG
Stock#:
10961
Place/Date:
Basle / 1579
Size:
7.5 x 6 inches
Condition:
VG+
Stock#:
0748
Place/Date:
Basle / 1579
Size:
6 x 4 inches
Condition:
VG+
Stock#:
11907
Place/Date:
Basle / 1570 circa
Size:
6 x 4 inches
Condition:
VG+
Stock#:
26263
Place/Date:
Basle / 1579
Size:
5 x 4 inches
Condition:
VG+
Stock#:
20874
Place/Date:
Basle / 1579
Size:
5.5 x 4 inches
Condition:
VG+
Stock#:
23048
Place/Date:
Basle / 1579
Size:
5.5 x 4 inches
Condition:
VG+
Stock#:
0738
Place/Date:
Basle / 1579
Size:
5 x 3 inches
Condition:
VG+
Stock#:
0741
Place/Date:
Basle / 1579
Size:
5.5 x 4 inches
Condition:
VG
Stock#:
10989
Place/Date:
Basle / 1579
Size:
6 x 5.5 inches
Condition:
VG+
Stock#:
0742
Place/Date:
Basle / 1579
Size:
6 x 5.5 inches
Condition:
Stock#:
20561
Place/Date:
Basle / 1579
Size:
6 x 5 inches
Condition:
VG+
Stock#:
9602
Place/Date:
Basle / 1579
Size:
6 x 4 inches
Condition:
VG
Stock#:
10954
Place/Date:
Basle / 1579
Size:
6.5 x 5 inches
Condition:
VG
Stock#:
10963
Place/Date:
Basle / 1579
Size:
15.5 x 10 inches
Condition:
VG
Stock#:
9316
Place/Date:
Basel / 1552 circa
Size:
15.5 x 10.5 inches
Condition:
VG
Stock#:
58690
Place/Date:
Basel / 1550
Size:
15.5 x 10.5 inches
Condition:
VG+
Stock#:
17344
Place/Date:
Basle / 1588 circa
Size:
8 x 6 inches
Condition:
VG
Stock#:
27478
Place/Date:
Basle / 1560 circa
Size:
12 x 10 inches
Condition:
VG
Stock#:
29623
Place/Date:
Basle / 1560 circa
Size:
5.5 x 4 inches
Condition:
VG+
Stock#:
27231
Place/Date:
Basle / 1579
Size:
15 x 9 inches
Condition:
VG
Stock#:
9330
Place/Date:
Basle / 1544 circa
Size:
15 x 11 inches
Condition:
VG
Stock#:
41407
Place/Date:
Basle / 1544
Size:
15 x 11 inches
Condition:
VG+
Stock#:
54681
Place/Date:
Basle / 1544
Size:
15 x 11 inches
Condition:
VG+
Stock#:
55373
Place/Date:
Basle / 1544 circa
Size:
15 x 11 inches
Condition:
VG
Stock#:
35005
Place/Date:
Basle / 1544 circa
Size:
15 x 11 inches
Condition:
VG
Stock#:
38647
Place/Date:
Basle / 1550 circa
Size:
15 x 11 inches
Condition:
VG+
Stock#:
52742
Place/Date:
Basle / 1545
Size:
15 x 11 inches
Condition:
Good
Stock#:
56172
Place/Date:
Basle / 1550
Size:
15 x 11 inches
Condition:
VG+
Stock#:
0002
Place/Date:
Basle / 1550
Size:
15 x 11 inches
Condition:
VG+
Stock#:
11287