Sebastian Münster

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Portrait of C.E.1552

Sebastian Münster (C.E.1488 – 1552), German cartographer and cosmographer.

Universal cosmographia:[edit]


  • Gulon insatiable, in the Suecian language it is called Ierff, and in the Germanic Vilfrast, which animal discards and purges its belly by squeezing it between the trees, and immediately runs again to eat, and when the hunter comes he wounds it with thunderbolt for the leather that the gentlemen wear, for which she is very beautiful. But those who wear such garments almost change into the nature of similar animals. (p. 914)
  • [On Attila] This man had a sharp and circumspect wit, a strong and small person, a great soul, practical and very well educated in the matters of war, astute and prudent in his advice. In addition to this there was in him a great art of deception and snares, a desperate audacity, a cruel and proud soul, perfidy more than African, a beautiful form of person, a grim appearance, a slightly large head, small eyes. , the rare beard, the flat nose, the almost hoary hats, dark in color, and a lot of impatient lust. He was equally proud in walking: he turned his eyes around here and there, sometimes in the movements of his body he showed the haughtiness of his soul. (p. 920)
  • [On Vlad III of Wallachia] It is said that this Dracula was very cruel, and that the Turkish ambassadors not wanting to humiliate themselves by honoring the Phrygian pile to maintain custom, fixed it to it with three nails in the head so they couldn't move. He impaled many Turks and celebrated among them a banquet of his friends. He invited all the poor, the useless people oppressed by serious illness or by fortune, old, decrepit, and already useless, and having filled them in their favor, he burned them. He often cut off the soles of the Turks' feet, and a knife with salt, fudral lingere from the goats, who gave him better torment with the harshness of their tongue. Asking a Florentine merchant that his money be preserved for him, he had him placed on the road, and so that he did not lie about the numbered money, he let him go safe and sound that night. He used such severity in the Barbara region that everyone was safer with what he had in the forest. (p. 992)
  • Among all the serpents, the dragon is the largest, as it has sharp and closed teeth: but it has greater strength in its tail than in its teeth, and has contained poison from it, as much as the other serpents. If he binds anyone with his tail, he kills him, nor is the elephant safe with his greatness. Empire that hides in the streets: where elephants walk, ties their legs with its tail, and drowns them. (p. 1145
  • Libya and Mauritania also have Panthere which by another name are called leopards, and it is a cruel animal, fast in running, of glaucous or blue colour, varied with many spots, which tends to ambush monkeys and alli deer. When he catches monkeys he uses such a cunning. When he enters among the monkeys, all the monkeys flee to the trees. Now the leopard, lying on the ground, pretends to be dead, closes his eyes and holds his breath. Seeing this, the monkeys rejoice at the beginning, but do not dare to come down, even at the last moment one of them takes courage, but not without fear, they go down, approaches the leopard lowly, and jumps back again, and then it returns and senses a sign of life in its eyes and breath: not finding it, it tells the other monkeys to surely run down from the trees. Which then they did, and joyfully jumped around, and thought that their dead enemy was lying on the ground, and then they danced like that for a while, the leopard immediately getting up, tore some with his claws and tore others with his teeth, and eats that part which is most pleasing to him. But when the men want to catch the Leopards, they stick to where they usually drink, and in that place they place some excellent wine, with which the Leopards become so inebriated and fall asleep that they take them without difficulty. (p. 1227)


It is not surprising if men among themselves have achieved not only varied fortunes, but also nature, customs and ways of living, seeing that countries and places have the same variety, since a nation gives birth to very white men, a others somewhat white, others dark, others not very black at all. Thus God ordained that men, like all other things, should be born of various natures and minds and of many industries, and that each should be content with his lot, damning the state, form and fortune of others.


Other projects:[edit]

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