40 results in English
Map of Lesser Antilles
Joan Vinckeboons (1617–70) was a Dutch cartographer and engraver born into a family of artists of Flemish origin. He was employed by the Dutch West India Company and for more than 30 years produced maps for use by Dutch mercantile and military shipping. He was a business partner of Joan Blaeu, one of the most important map and atlas publishers of the day. Vinckeboons drew a series of 200 manuscript maps that were used in the production of atlases, including Blaeu’s Atlas Maior. This pen-and-ink and watercolor map ...
Contributed by Library of Congress
The Compendium of Graces and Fountain of Charms
This 17th-century manuscript contains the text of Majmoo’a al-Latā’if wa-Yanbu‘ al-Zarā’if (The compendium of graces and fountain of charms), a collection of esoteric and mystic prayers. The work is divided into many chapters, unnumbered and typically only a few pages long, with rubrications indicating the beginning of each chapter. The work discusses the spiritual expediency of praying in a certain manner; on a certain Islamic month, day of the week, or religious occasion, citing sayings of the Prophet Muhammad and other Islamic tradition as supporting arguments. The ...
Compendium of Latin Translations of Persian Astronomical Tables
This volume is a compendium of six works that includes Latin translations of portions of the Zīj-i Sulṭānī by Muḥammad Ṭaraghāy ibn Shāhrukh ibn Tīmūr (1394–1449), known as Ulugh Beg. The other works include an excerpt from the Taqwīm al-Buldān (entitled “A Description of Khwārazm and Transoxiana from the Tables of Abū al-Fidāʾ”) by Abū al-Fidāʾ Ismāʿīl Ibn ʿAlī (1273-1331), and a star table by Muhammad ibn Muhammad Tizīnī. Ulugh Beg (“Great Commander” in Turkish) was a grandson of Tīmūr (known in the West as Tamerlane) and the ...
Contributed by Qatar National Library
Muḥammad al-Farghānī’s Elements of Chronology and Astronomy
Aḥmad ibn Moḥammad ibn Kathīr al-Farghānī (flourished 861) was an astronomer who worked at the court of the early Abbasid caliphs. He appears to have been active in the court of al-Ma’mun, and he may well be the same figure who is said to have been entrusted by al-Mutawakkil with the construction of the nilometer in Cairo.  In that case, he would have been active from the early decades of the ninth century to his death in 861 (spanning the rules of al-Ma’mun, al-Muʿtaṣim, al-Wāthiq, and ...
Contributed by Qatar National Library
The Bay of All Saints
This map by Joan Blaeu (1596-1673), one of the most important Dutch cartographers, shows the Bay of All Saints off the coast of Brazil. The bay was named by Amerigo Vespucci, who is said to have entered it on All Saints’ Day, November 1, in the year 1501. Located on the bay is the city of Salvador.
Brazil, which Coast is a Portuguese Possession, Divided into Fourteen Captaincies, Showing the Middle of the Country Inhabited by Many Unknown Peoples
This coastal map of Portuguese Brazil is by one of the greatest of the French cartographers, Nicolas Sanson (1600-67). Sanson gave geography lessons to both King Louis XIII and King Louis XIV. He also was named official geographer to the king, and his two younger sons succeeded him in this position. Until Sanson, the field of cartography was dominated by the Dutch, whose maps favored aesthetics over exactness. Sanson’s maps, notable for accuracy as well as elegance, marked a shift in the dominance of the field of cartography from ...
Modern and Completely Correct Map of the Entire World
This mid-17th century “modern and completely correct map” of the entire world was printed in Amsterdam by Joan Blaeu (1596-1673), a member of the Blaeu family that helped to define mapmaking during the Dutch golden age. Beginning in the 16th century, the Blaeu firm produced some of Europe’s most renowned maps, globes, and atlases. After studying under Danish astronomer Tycho Brahe, Joan’s father, Willem Blaeu (1571-1638), founded the company in 1596. In 1633 he was appointed official chartmaker to the Dutch East India Company, an office that passed ...
The Most Recent and Most Accurate Description of All of America
Little is known about Dutch cartographer Jacob Meurs, born about 1619. He was a map publisher, engraver, and bookseller in Arnhem, and later in Amsterdam. After his death, his wife, known simply as the Widow Meurs, continued his business. This map, claiming to be the “most recent and most accurate description” of the Americas, closely follows Nicolas Sanson’s contemporary map of the New World, also published in 1650, including Sanson’s “mistakes”: California is drawn as an island, and the Great Lakes are distorted in comparison to later, more ...
The Holy Land or Promised Land (Formerly Palestine), Recently Depicted and Published
Nicolaus (also spelled Nicolas, Nicolaes) Visscher was the son of a Dutch master painter and mapmaker, Claes Janszoon Visscher, and was known for the exquisite artistry of the maps he produced. In the 16th and 17th centuries the Dutch were involved in a race against Portugal for control of the spice trade. The antipathy between the two states ran especially deep because of the alliance of Portugal with the Kingdom of Spain, with whom the Dutch had been embroiled in the Eighty Years' War (1566-1648). Only one year before the ...
Contributed by Library of Congress
The History of the Caribby-Islands
This early study of the Caribbean is an English translation of a French work published anonymously in Rotterdam in 1658 under the title Histoire naturelle et morale des iles Antilles de l'Amerique (Natural and moral history of the Antilles). The original author was Charles de Rochefort (1605-83), who identified himself in subsequent editions of the book. Not much is known about de Rochefort. The available evidence suggests he was a Protestant pastor sent to be a minister or chaplain to French-speaking Protestants in the Caribbean. He based his work ...
Contributed by Library of Congress
Trakai Castle Court Year Book for 1660–61
At the height of its power in the 15th century, the Grand Duchy of Lithuania ruled over the territory of present-day Belarus, Latvia, Lithuania, and Ukraine, and parts of Estonia, Moldova, Poland, and Russia. In the Union of Lublin of 1569, the Grand Duchy and the Kingdom of Poland merged to form the Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth. The commonwealth had a highly developed legal and administrative system, based on local land courts that decided civil cases involving the gentry and castle courts that dealt with other local matters, including criminal cases. Courts ...
Map of California Shown as an Island
Joan Vinckeboons (1617-70) was a Dutch cartographer and engraver born into a family of artists of Flemish origin. He was in the employ of the Dutch West India Company and produced maps for over 30 years for use by Dutch mercantile and military shipping. He was a business partner of Joan Blaeu, one of the most important map and atlas publishers of the day. Vinckeboons drew a series of 200 manuscript maps that were used in the production of atlases, including Blaeu’s Atlas Major. This map from around 1650 ...
Contributed by Library of Congress
The Tale of Genji: Commentary on Key Words and Phrases, Volumes 55-57
Genji monogatari (Tale of Genji) is often considered the first great novel in world literature. The author of the work, Murasaki Shibuku, was born around 978 and spent most of her life at or near the imperial court in Kyoto. After a brief marriage to an older man, she entered the service of Empress Akiko (or Shōshi) around 1005 as a lady-in-waiting. The novel consists of 54 books or chapters that recount the life and romances of Prince Genji, the young, handsome, and talented son of an emperor. The novel ...
Contributed by Library of Congress
The Tale of Genji: Genealogy, Volume 58
Genji monogatari (Tale of Genji) is often considered the first great novel in world literature. The author of the work, Murasaki Shibuku, was born around 978 and spent most of her life at or near the imperial court in Kyoto. After a brief marriage to an older man, she entered the service of Empress Akiko (or Shōshi) around 1005 as a lady-in-waiting. The novel consists of 54 books or chapters that recount the life and romances of Prince Genji, the young, handsome, and talented son of an emperor. The novel ...
Contributed by Library of Congress
The Tale of Genji: A Sequel, Volume 59
Genji monogatari (Tale of Genji) is often considered the first great novel in world literature. The author of the work, Murasaki Shibuku, was born around 978 and spent most of her life at or near the imperial court in Kyoto. After a brief marriage to an older man, she entered the service of Empress Akiko (or Shōshi) around 1005 as a lady-in-waiting. The novel consists of 54 books or chapters that recount the life and romances of Prince Genji, the young, handsome, and talented son of an emperor. The novel ...
Contributed by Library of Congress
The Tale of Genji: Index, Volume 60
Genji monogatari (Tale of Genji) is often considered the first great novel in world literature. The author of the work, Murasaki Shibuku, was born around 978 and spent most of her life at or near the imperial court in Kyoto. After a brief marriage to an older man, she entered the service of Empress Akiko (or Shōshi) around 1005 as a lady-in-waiting. The novel consists of 54 books or chapters that recount the life and romances of Prince Genji, the young, handsome, and talented son of an emperor. The novel ...
Contributed by Library of Congress
A Geographical Rendering of Judaea, or the Land of Israel, in Which the Positions of the Most Famous Places in the Old and New Testament are Precisely Depicted
This hand-colored copperplate map of the Holy Land, featuring notable cities from the Bible, appeared in Le theatre du monde ou nouvel atlas (Theater of the world, or new atlas), a work by Jan Jansson (1588-1664) that was published in Amsterdam circa 1658. It depicts the kingdoms of Judea and Israel, along with territory stretching north to present-day Beirut and land on both sides of the Jordan River as far south as the Dead Sea. It also includes a key to major cities, priestly towns, and towns belonging to the ...
A Current and Correct Depiction of Arabia Felix, Arabia Petraea, and Arabia Deserta
This map from 1658 was published by Johannes Janssonius (1588-1664), or Jan Jansson. Jansson was born in Arnhem, the son of Jan Jansson the Elder, a publisher and bookseller. Jansson’s maps are similar to those of Willem Janszoon Blaeu (1571-1638), the founder of the Blaeu cartographic firm, and Jansson is sometimes accused of copying from his rival, but many of his maps predate those of Blaeu or cover different regions. This map is very similar to an earlier Blaeu map. The map shows more rivers on the Arabian Peninsula ...
Contributed by Qatar National Library
Departure of Soldiers to a Battle
Originally, this unsigned wash drawing of soldiers leaving for battle was attributed to Johann-Philipp Lembke, but it is now considered to be the work of Jacques Courtois (1621-76). Courtois was a French painter who lived most of his life in Italy; he is also known as Il Borgognone. Following his training as an artist, Courtois served in the French military. He is widely recognized for his depictions of battles, often done in wash drawing. This style, which is produced by applying a series of monochrome washes over a pen or ...
Contributed by Brown University Library
A Complete Study of the Chinese Zither
This book includes both research on Chinese music and detailed and complete marginalia. Although the book has been damaged, it remains valuable. The prefatory note on the use of the book records its contents, including detailed research into the origins of notes and pitches; complete standards for the construction of a floor zither (qin); a compilation of the theories of musicologists; a compilation of digests of fingering techniques; a strict comparison of tunes that have been handed down or recovered, with detailed collation of measures and lines; edited essays of ...
Contributed by Library of Congress
The Game of France
Pierre Duval (1619-83) was a nephew of the great French geographer Nicolas Sanson (1600-67) who rose to become “geographer to the king” in his own right. In the 1660s and 1670s he published a large number of atlases and geographic works. Duval was the first in France to conceive of geographical games that aimed to inform and instruct while providing entertainment. Jeu de France (The game of France) is a chutes-and-ladders game made up of 63 squares, each representing a province, except for the last, which contains a map of ...
Ancient Assyria Divided into Syria, Mesopotamia, Babylonia, and Assyria
Little is known about the French mapmaker Philippe de La Rue. He was associated with the pioneering French cartographer Nicolas Sanson, and specialized in Biblical themes. In 1651, he published La Terre sainte en six cartes géographiques (The Holy Land in six maps), the first collection of maps laid out in a chronological sequence around a unifying theme. La Rue’s goal was to trace the history of the world “from the origins to the present.” The six maps cover the land of Canaan and the Exodus, the Promised Land ...
Contributed by Library of Congress
The Exquisite Book on Effective Spices
This 17th-century manuscript by Zawraq al-Maghribī is a treatise on the uses of herbs and animal body parts. Based on the teaching legacy of his father, Ḥafṣ Īsā ibn Husayn, the author states that he personally has tested all the information contained in the book. The work is divided into 12 sections, methodically arranged with reference to the human body, literally from head to toe. Chapter 1 covers headaches; Chapter 2, the digestive tract and the chest; Chapter 3, the stomach, liver, pancreas, kidneys, and bladder; Chapter 4, the stomach ...
Articles about the Transfer of New Netherland on the 27th of August, Old Style, Anno 1664
On August 27, 1664, a fleet of four British warships under the command of Colonel Richard Nicolls sailed into the harbor of New Amsterdam (present-day New York City) and demanded that Peter Stuyvesant, the director-general of the Dutch colony of New Netherland, surrender the colony to the British. The out-gunned Stuyvesant had no choice but to comply, and under English rule Nicolls became the first governor of the renamed Province of New York. This document lists the articles of capitulation by which the colony was surrendered and that established the ...
Remonstration of the Administrators of the Dutch West India Company to their Lords the State General about Several Examples of Tyranny and Violence by the English in New Netherland
In the 1660s, colonists from the English colonies of Connecticut and Massachusetts to the east and northeast and Maryland and Virginia to the south and southwest increasingly infringed on the Dutch colony of New Netherland, which was located in parts of present-day New York, New Jersey, Delaware, and Connecticut. This remonstrance, or complaint, published in Schiedam in 1663, was an appeal by the directors of the West India Company to the States-General, the ruling body of the United Provinces of the Netherlands, for increased protection against the incursions of the ...
Brief and Concise Plan Intended to be a Mutual Agreement for Some Colonists Willing to go to the South River in New Netherland
Pieter Cornelis Plockhoy was a Dutch Mennonite and social reformer, born in the city of Zierikzee circa 1625. He moved to Amsterdam in 1648, where he became well known in the city’s intellectual circles. In 1658 he went to London where he tried unsuccessfully to gain the support of Oliver Cromwell, the antiroyalist Lord Protector of the Commonwealth, for the establishment of utopian settlements in England. Plockhoy returned to Netherlands in 1661 and in 1662 concluded a contract with the Amsterdam magistrates for the establishment of a settlement on ...
Short Story about New Netherland [...] and Special Possibilities to Populate
This pamphlet, published anonymously in Amsterdam in October 1662, concerns the establishment of a settlement on the South River (as the Dutch called the Delaware River) in New Netherland by the Dutch Mennonite and social reformer Pieter Cornelis Plockhoy. The pamphlet consisted of proposals sent to the magistrates of the city of Amsterdam to gain their support for the settlement, which Plockhoy intended to be for poor and needy families and based on reformist principles. The pamphlet was partly intended to reassure investors that the settlement would also be a ...
Conditions as Created by their Lords Burgomasters of Amsterdam
This pamphlet, published in Amsterdam in 1656, contains information about the patroonships offered by the West India Company to settlers in the Dutch colony of New Netherland, and in particular about the policies of the city of Amsterdam toward overseas colonization under the terms of the agreement between the city and the West India Company. Intended to help populate the colony, the patroonships were large grants of land made to Dutch investors who agreed to establish a colony of “fifty souls, upwards of fifteen years old.” The pamphlet was, in ...
Description of New Netherland (as it is Today)
This book, published in Amsterdam in 1655, is one of the most important sources for the study of the Dutch colony of New Netherland. Adriaen van der Donck was trained as a lawyer at Leiden University. In 1641–43, he worked at the vast patroonship (estate) of Rensselaerswijck, surrounding present-day Albany, New York. He then applied for and received from the West India Company his own grant of land, a large tract located just north of Manhattan in present-day Westchester County, New York. (The city of Yonkers takes its name ...
Commentary on the Comprehensive Book on the Management of Horses
The legal scholar ‘Umar ibn Raslān al-Bulqīnī  was from a renowned family of Egyptian scholars of Palestinian origin. In his Muqaddima (Introduction), the great Arab historian and historiographer Ibn Khaldūn (1332–1406) praised al-Bulqīnī as the most celebrated jurist of his era, even though Al-Bulqīnī did not gain the prestigious title of Šayh al-Islām until later in life. Al-Bulqīnī's erudition and deep knowledge of Islamic tradition are reflected in this work, Qaṭr al-Sayl fi Amr al-Hayl (Commentary on the comprehensive book on the management of horses), which is an ...
Contributed by Library of Congress
The Explanation of the Abridgment on Calculus
The present manuscript preserves an extensive commentary on the 17th-century mathematical treatise Al-Ḫulāṣa fī al-Ḥisāb (The abridgment on calculus), which was composed by Bahā' al-Dīn Al-‘Amilī (1547–1621), one of the leading intellectuals of 17th century Safavid Persia (present-day Iran). Born in the city of Baalbek (present-day Lebanon), Al-‘Amilī was an important figure in many different fields of knowledge, including theology, mysticism, poetry, astronomy, mathematics, and architecture. His main contribution to mathematics, the Al-Ḫulāṣa fī al-Ḥisāb, was well known and is the subject of the commentary by ...
Contributed by Library of Congress
The System of Saturn
Christiaan Huygens (1629–95) was born in The Hague, the Netherlands, into a prominent Dutch family. Unlike his grandfather, father, and brother who all served as secretaries and diplomats to the ruling house of Orange, Huygens dedicated himself to science and mathematics. He published three mathematical books, produced a manuscript on hydrostatics, wrote a work on the collision of elastic bodies, did research on centrifugal force, and invented the pendulum clock. Huygens was especially intrigued by the planet Saturn, whose protruding “handles” were visible through the telescopes of the day ...
Contributed by Smithsonian Institution
Makian As It Appears from the Side of Ngofakiaha
This view of the island of Makian and the village of Ngofakiaha in the Maluku Islands (present-day Indonesia) is from the Atlas Blaeu-Van der Hem. Representing the entire surface of the Earth, the 50 volume work is often considered the most beautiful and most remarkable atlas ever composed. The collectors atlas (a special form of compiling cartographic material) was based on the Atlas Maior (Great atlas), published in Amsterdam by Joan Blaeu (1596–1673) in various editions between 1662 and 1672. This was the largest and most expensive book produced ...
Contributed by Austrian National Library
Map of the Three Arabias: Excerpted Partly from the Arab of Nubia, Partly from Several Other Authors
This map of “the three Arabias” by French royal geographer Nicolas Sanson d’Abbeville is one of the few 17th-century maps of the Arabian Peninsula. Despite its importance as a crossroads of trade between three continents, the geography of Arabia remained largely unknown to European cartographers until the era of European exploration and expansion in the 15th century. Although published in 1654–by the Parisian printer and engraver Pierre Mariette-Sanson’s map remained largely based on the medieval work of the 12th-century Arab cartographer Al-Idrisi (1099-1164), whose work Geographia Nubiensis ...
Contributed by Library of Congress
Map of a Part of the Island of Cuba and of the Bahamas
Joan Vinckeboons (1617-70) was a Dutch cartographer and engraver born into a family of artists of Flemish origin. He was in the employ of the Dutch West India Company and produced maps for over 30 years for use by Dutch mercantile and military shipping. This map of a portion of central Cuba and the Bahamas reflects the careful mapping that the Dutch West India Company undertook to facilitate safe and successful navigation in that region. The map identifies the Bahamas Channel (i.e., the Gulf Stream) that served as the ...
Contributed by Library of Congress
Burning and Melting
This manuscript is an illuminated and illustrated copy of the poem Sūz va gudāz (Burning and melting) by Naw’ī Khabūshānī, who died in 1019 AH (1610 AD). It recounts the love story of a Hindu girl who burns herself on the funeral pyre of her betrothed. The codex was written in Nasta’līq script in black ink by Ibn Sayyid Murād al-Ḥusaynī and illustrated by Muḥammad ‘Alī Mashhadī in 1068 AH (1657 AD). According to the colophon, Ibn Sayyid Murād al-Ḥusaynī copied the manuscript for the painter Muḥammad ‘Alī ...
Contributed by Walters Art Museum
Refuting Heresy
Pi xie lun (Refuting heresy) is by Yang Guangxian (1597–1669) from Shexian, Anhui Province, a fierce opponent of the early Christian missionaries to China. Beginning about 1659, Yang assumed the self-appointed role of campaigner against the missionaries. In 1644, German Jesuit Johann Adam Schall von Bell (circa 1592–1666) was asked to prepare for the new Qing dynasty a calendar based on Western mathematical calculations. Schall later was named director of the imperial Board of Astronomy. Yang submitted a document to the Board of Ceremonies, charging Schall with errors ...
Contributed by National Central Library
The Tale of Genji: Volumes 1-54
Genji monogatari (Tale of Genji) is often considered the first great novel in world literature. The author of the work, Murasaki Shibuku, was born around 978 and spent most of her life at or near the imperial court in Kyoto. After a brief marriage to an older man, she entered the service of Empress Akiko (or Shōshi) around 1005 as a lady-in-waiting. The novel consists of 54 books or chapters that recount the life and romances of Prince Genji, the young, handsome, and talented son of an emperor. The novel ...
Contributed by Library of Congress
Saint Ignatius of Loyola, Founder of the Society of Jesus: Heroic Poem
S. Ignacio de Loyola, fundador de la Compañia de Iesus: Poema Heroyco (Saint Ignatius of Loyola, founder of the Society of Jesus: Heroic poem) is an epic work about the life of Saint Ignatius, founder of the Jesuit order, by Hernando Domínguez Camargo (1606–59), a Colombian poet and Jesuit priest. Domínguez Camargo drew upon the genre of Spanish and Italian epic poetry and the body of hagiographic literature that had developed about Ignatius to produce this extraordinary work of literature. The poem, contained in five large volumes, consists of ...
Commentary on "The Compendium of Plain Astronomy"
This work is a commentary on Mulahhas fī al-Hay'a Al-Basīta (The compendium of plain astronomy), a treatise on theoretical astronomy by Maḥmūd ibn Muḥammad Jighmīnī. A renowned Persian mathematician and astronomer, Jighmīnī was born in the village of Jaghmīn, in the region of Khwarizm in present-day Uzbekistan. He died circa 1221 during the cataclysmic Mongol conquest of Khwarizm. Several popular commentaries were written on his treatise. On the cover of this manuscript a handwritten note from a previous owner states: “This is a commentary of the 'Handbook of al-Jighmīnī ...
Contributed by Qatar National Library