Show all maps

Forlani's first world map

[World Map] Paulus de furlanis Veronensis opus... ex Jacobi gastaldi...
Giovanni Camocio,
Publication place
Publication date
300 by 535mm (11.75 by 21 inches).
  • Description

    Separately published engraved map.

  • Notes

    Fine example of the second state of Paolo Forlani's first map of the world.

    Forlani has based his work on Gastaldi's seminal world map of 1546, the first of the so-called "Lafreri school" of world maps, which were published in Italy during the middle of the sixteenth century. In fact, Forlani would be responsible for four different world maps over the next ten years.

    In each of the world maps Forlani has relied on Gastaldi's map for the general outline and virtually all the geographical detail. The only significant change is in North America where Forlani has omitted the many clumps of trees placed on an empty landscape by Gastaldi and has inserted imaginary or reported towns, provinces, and ranges of mountains. The names 'Canada' and 'Saguenai' appear for the first time, and the main land mass of North America is still joined to Asia.

    The map is decorated with Venetian galleys, ships and sea monsters. To the four corners is decorative strap work, containing Forlani's imprint and date, upper and lower left, an armillary sphere upper right, and a pyramid denoting the publisher's Giovanni Camocio's shop at the 'Sign of the Pyramid'.

    Paolo Forlani is unusual within the Laferi school because he was one of the few to combine the talent of mapmaking and engraving, while also infrequently acting as a publisher and mapseller. He was much-sought after as an engraver and mapmaker, particularly as he was adept at the difficult art of engraving lettering. Consequently, he was employed by four of the leading publishers of the period to prepare maps for them -Giovanni Francesco Camocio, Ferrando Bertelli and Bolgnini Zaltieri from Venice, and Claudio Duchetti from Rome.

    However, there is precious little documentary evidence for Forlani's activities. For example, only one of his maps was the subject of an application for a privilege. As a result, much that is known about his activities has been reconstructed from the maps with which he was associated. However he did not sign all the maps he engraved.

  • Bibliography

    Shirley, World, 106 state 2.