Slavonia, Croatia, Bosnia, and a part of Dalmatia


Gerard Mercator’s 1590 Sclavonia, Croatia, Bosnia cum Dalmatiae parte (Slavonia, Croatia, Bosnia, and a part of Dalmatia) is the best representation of Bosnia made up to that time. One of the oldest items in the cartographic collections of the National and University Library of Bosnia and Herzegovina, the map was published by the well-known Blaeu firm in Amsterdam. Shown are villages, towns, rivers, and mountains. The scale is in German miles. The map is in Latin, but it gives place names in the languages of the region, which include the Slavic languages and, in some places, German. Mercator (1512–94) was born in Rupelmonde in Flanders (Belgium). His given name was Gerard Kremer. “Mercator,” meaning “merchant,” is a Latinized version of his last name in Dutch. 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.

Last updated: April 2, 2014