Japanese world map, 18th century

Japanese world map, 18th century

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Credit: LIBRARY OF CONGRESS/SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY

Caption: Japanese world map. This world map, by Japanese cartographer Nagakubo Sekisui (1717-1801), dates from around 1785. It is based on the 1602 edition of Matteo Ricci's world map, which was published in China in 1584. It is a pseudocylindrical projection centred on the Pacific Ocean, with mountains shown pictorially. The main continents (Europe, Africa, Asia, the Americas) are mapped with reasonable accuracy, but the as-yet-undiscovered southern and Antarctic land masses are represented as 'Magellanica' (also known as Terra Australis). Like the Ricci map, Nagakubo's map is a wood block print. The text at top is Japanese katakana script.

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