Libro di Benedetto Bordone (1528)

The Libro di Benedetto Bordone is an eighty-folio book that describes all the islands of the world (nel quale si ragiona de tutte l'isole del mondo). Designed and edited by Bordon, Niccolò Zoppino printed it in Venice in 1528. The title page is framed by a woodcut border that originally appeared in the earliest illustrated edition of Vitruvius's De architectura (Venice: Johannes Tacuinus, 1511). The preliminary material includes woodcuts depicting a schematic sphere, three maps of Europe, the Aegean, and the world. Then, the rest of the book is a consistent sequence of text in Roman typeface and woodcuts of islands framed by pairs of lines.

Specifically, the text is divided into three books. Book I includes 21 maps and descriptions of the islands in the Atlantic as well as a city plan of Tenochtitlan; Book II has 74 islands in the Mediterranean and bird's views of several Italian cities; and Book III contains 8 islands in the Indian Ocean and near East Asia. In general, the islands are described in simple lines, with occasional details such as mountains, trees, towers, and houses. The Libro is particularly fascinating for inserting the latest discoveries by the Spanish in the Americas. See, for instance the magnificent woodcut of the city of Mexico (Tenochtitlan).

<p>Bordone, 1528 (Title Page)</p>

Title Page

<p>Bordone, 1528 (Map of Europe)</p>

Map of Europe

<p>Bordone, 1528 (X)</p>

Tenochtitlan

<p>Bordone, 1528 (XIII)</p>

Cuba

<p>Bordone, 1528 (XXX)</p>

Venice

Pliny's Historia Naturalis (1513)

Libro di Benedetto Bordone (1534)