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- Gerard Mercator (1512–94) was born in Rupelmonde in Flanders (Belgium). His given name was Gerard de Kremer or Cremer. “Mercator,” meaning “merchant,” is a Latinized version of his Flemish last name. He studied philosophy and theology at the University of Leuven, and developed an interest in astronomy and mathematics. He produced his first map, of Palestine, in 1537. He went on to create numerous maps and globes in the course of his long career and is best known for his invention of the Mercator map projection. In 1554 he moved from Louvain to Duisburg (present-day Germany), where he operated a shop and lived for the rest of his life. In 1578 Mercator conceived a plan to publish a great atlas of the world containing up to 100 maps. The work was delayed by a shortage of engravers, and Mercator began publishing the atlas in parts, beginning with Gallia-Belgia-Germania in 1585, and continuing with Italia-Slavonia-Grecia in 1589. This map, showing a large part of southeastern Europe, was one of 23 maps to appear in the latter work. Depicted on the map are all or parts of Bulgaria, Moldova, Romania, and Serbia.
Title in Original Language
Walachia, Servia, Bulgaria, Romania
Type of Item
- 1 map ; 57 x 49 centimeters
- Bagrow, Leo. History of Cartography (revised and enlarged by R.A. Skelton) (Cambridge: Harvard University Press, 1964).