Cosmographic poem, 15th century

Cosmographic poem, 15th century

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Caption: Cosmographic poem. Illustrated page from the 15th-century cosmographic poem and medieval pilot-book 'La Sfera', written in Italian by Florentine merchant Gregorio Dati (1362-1435). The poem was intended to educate and guide navigators and sailors. It was written in 'ottava rima', rhyming stanzas of eight lines each. There are four stanzas on this page (each with a header). The illustrations show major rivers and oceans. This part of the poem refers to the course of rivers such as the Tigris and Euphrates, and the trade in spices between India and Ethiopia, as well as the cities of Damascus and Alexandria (last line of second stanza).

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