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    An early map of Ireland published in Italy in 1646. (click on image to enlarge). UPDATE: It sold for a hammer price of 7,200

    THIS 1646 map of Ireland by Sir Robert Dudley features as lot 160 in the James Adam sale of the catography collection of Dr. Barry Hewson in Dublin on September 14.  (see post for September 4). Born in 1574 Dudley was an illegitimate son of the Earl of Leicester, a minister of Queen Elizabeth I,  one of her favourites, and brother in law of the circumnavigator Thomas Cavendish.  These were turbulent political times and problems led to his exile to Italy.

    Dudley was of a scientific mind and formed an ambitious project to map all the known world. Drawing on the original charts of Henry Hudson (the English explorer after whom the Hudson River is named) and notes from other navigators it took him the best part of 40 years. The first edition of the Atlas appeared in 1646 when Dudley was 73. A collection of all the naval knowledge of the age it surpassed anything previously published.  This was the first sea-atlas of the whole world published by an Englishman (although in Italian, and published in Italy) using original work; the first to use Mercator’s projection; the first to dispense with rhumb lines; the first to include information on magnetic variation, tides and weather; and the first to advocate the use of Great Circle sailing.
    The Mercator projection, a major breakthrough in the nautical cartography of the 16th century, is a cylindrical map projection by the Flemish cartographer Gerardus Mercator in 1569. Far ahead of its time it became the standard map projection for nautical purposes because of its ability to represent lines of constant course, known as rhumb lines or loxodromes, as straight segments.  Two main problems prevented its immediate application: the impossibility of determining the longitude at sea with adequate accuracy and the fact that magnetic directions, instead of geographical directions, were used in navigation. Only in the middle of the 18th century, after the marine chronometer was invented, could the Mercator projection be fully adopted by navigators.
    Lot 160, the Carte particolare dell Mare di Ierlandia e parte di Inghil terra e della Iscotia. Lalongitudine comincia da l’Isola di Picco d’Asores.~di Europa Carta XXVIII  761 x 481 From Dell’Arcano Del Mare, di D. Ruberto Dudleo, Duca di Nortumbria e Conte di Warwich. libri sei. In Firenze, Nella Stamperia di Francesco Onofri, is estimated at 3,000-3,500 euro.
    UPDATE:  IT MADE 7,200

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