LIBRARY OF CONGRESS, GEOGRAPHY AND MAP DIVISION / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY LIBRARY OF CONGRESS, GEOGRAPHY AND MAP DIVISION / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY
Compass rose from Catalan Atlas, 14th century. North is at bottom. This compass rose is thought to be the first to be depicted on a map. A compass rose depicts the cardinal directions (north, south, east, west), with four intermediate points also shown here. The 6-page Catalan Atlas (1375) was produced on vellum by the Jewish cartographer Abraham Cresques. It was commissioned by the rulers of the Kingdom of Aragon (north-eastern Spain). This compass rose is from a map showing Europe, North Africa, and the Near East (see C010/9769). The text is in Catalan. This version is a facsimile (exact reproduction) produced in 1959 by the Spanish scholars Joan Vernet and David Romano. This facsimile page has been illuminated by hand in colour and gold leaf.
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