THE AMERICAS

Early cartography had the important bits

 

Cartography did improve

The New World

In 1552, the important elements were shown on this map: a Spanish flag in the Caribbean and a Portuguese Flag near Brazil.[1] The French activity is labeled with trees to the north in Québec and Labrador. The Queen of exploration (a caravel) is drawn in the (named) Pacific Sea with access via the (named) Strait of Magellan. Cannibals are shown in Brazil south of the Amazon River. The European prize is shown: Cathay (China) on the continent of India. Japan is called Zipangri. Canada was not understood to be more than a thin isthmus blocking access to Cathay. The Hudson Bay reaches nearly to Florida. Notice that someone understood that the Rocky Mountains existed.

The modern map may be helpful to orient the older first map.[2]

ENDNOTES

1          See the Hargrett Rare Book & Manuscript Library, at M8 Tabula nouarum insularum, at http://historymedren.about.com/gi/dynamic/offsite.htm?site=http://scarlett.libs.uga.edu/darchive/hargrett/maps/neworld.html;

2          Houghton Mifflin map, http://www.reisenett.no/ekstern.html?url=http://www.eduplace.com/ss/ssmaps/wrldcont.html.

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