Ausszug auss des Abrahami Ortelij Theatro Orbis teutsch beschriben durch Levinum...

Abraham Ortelius (*1527 - 1598)
Pocket atlas by Ortelius with 128 copper engraved maps, publihed by L. Hulsius and J. van Keerbergen 1604 in Frankfurt.

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Reference 12590



Very Rare and Only German Edition of the Pocket Atlas by Ortelius. With 128 Maps.

Complete and well preserved example of the rare German edition of Ortelius's Epitome. Edited by Levinus Hulsius (Lieven Hulst) and printed together with Jan van Keerbergen 1604 in Frankfurt. The only published edition of Ortelius's pocket atlas with German text. In the last 20 years, only two copies have been offered in trade and at auction, one of them incomplete.

With engraved title page, on verso the coat of arms of Joachim Ernst of Brandenburg-Ansbach, Margrave of the Franconian Principality of Ansbach. Followed by 5 pages of dedication and a 37-page instruction and explanation with 2 engravings in the text. The instructions include a double-page folded map of the world by Hulsius (Shirley 210) surrounded by medallions of the navigators Vespucci, Columbus, Drake, Cavendish, Magellan and Del Cano. The track of Magellan's circumnavigation is marked. The actual map section consists of 127 full-page engraved maps mostly by Jan van Keerbergen and Michael Coignet after Ortelius first published 1602 in Antwerp. Beside the large world map Hulsius has added 4 additional maps from his own publications: No. 7 (Die Insul Madagascar), 20 (Die Insel Iava Maior), 77 (Lappenland) und 78 (Das alte Land Noua Zembla). Each maps with descriptive text. At the end 4 pages of index.

On the endpapers and title several old handwritten ownership inscriptions. In the margins partly marginalia in tiny writing. Several maps with annotations by an old hand.

This rare German edition exists in a few public collections and libraries only. We could locate examples of this German edition held in the following institutions, among them several are incomplete: Bayerische Staatsbibliothek, Heidelberg University Library, Library of the Germanisches Nationalmuseum, Württembergische Landesbibliothek, Lucerne Central and University Library, Newberry Library Chicago, Bibliothèque Nationale de France and Stockholm University Library.

All maps of this atlas can be seen in high resolution at our Atlas Gallery website: 1604 Ortelius/Hulsius Atlas


CartographerAbraham Ortelius
TitleAusszug auss des Abrahami Ortelij Theatro Orbis teutsch beschriben durch Levinum Hulsium, Francfort am Main. M.DC.IIII
Publisher, YearLevinus Hulsius, Jan van Keerbergen, Frankfurt, 1604
Size13.5 x 18.5 cm (5.3 x 7.3 inches), 8vo
Collation1 leaf, 44 pages, 135 leaves
Illustrations1 engraved copper title, 1 full page copper engraving, 1 double page folded map, 127 full page copper engraved maps, 2 copper engraving in text
CoverVellum binding
ReferencePhillips, P.L.: A List of Geographical Atlases in the Library of Congress, No. 420; Van der Krogt, P.: Koeman's Atlantes Neerlandici, 333:41; Shirley, R. W.: The Mapping of the World, No. 210


Contemporary flexible vellum binding with handwritten title on the spine. The vellum somewhat shrunken, causing the front cover to protrude somewhat. Upper and lower joints and the corners partly restored.

Several old handwritten ownership inscriptions on endpapers and title. Endpapers with large ink stain, reattached. Several marginalia in tiny script. Several maps with annotations by an old hand. Some foxing and ink stains. A very good and complete copy.


Abraham Ortelius was born 1527 in Antwerp. He studied mathematics, Greek and Latin and travelled a lot across Europe. He established a business in dealing with books and drawing maps. His first remarkable map was a 8 sheet world map in the year 1564, but only three copies have survived. In 1570 he issued the Theatrum Orbis Terrarum, the first modern Atlas with uniformly sized maps in a systematic collection. The term Atlas was not used until Mercator introduced it 20 years later. Most of the maps in Theatrum have been engraved by Frans Hogenberg. At the time of publication, the atlas was the most expensive book ever printed. Nevertheless it was a big success and around 7000 copies have been printed until 1612 in many editions and six different languages. Beside the Theatrum, Ortelius compiled a series of historical maps and published it in the Parergon Theatri which was bound with the Theatrum from 1579 onwards or published separately.

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Abraham Ortelius: Ausszug auss des Abrahami Ortelij Theatro Orbis teutsch beschriben durch Levinum Hulsium, Francfort am Main. M.DC.IIII.
Pocket atlas by Ortelius with 128 copper engraved maps, publihed by L. Hulsius and J. van Keerbergen 1604 in Frankfurt.

Atlases - Ortelius, Abraham - Ausszug auss des Abrahami Ortelij Theatro...

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