Sebastian Münster

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Münster was a prolific cosmographer, humanist, theologian and linguist. A Franciscan friar from around 1506, he studied in Tübingen and taught in Basel and Heidelberg before leaving the order and moving to Basel, where he indulged in his other great love: cartography. Münster produced, and had a hand in, several important works. In 1540, he published his edition of Ptolemy’s ‘Geographia’ and in 1544, Münster produced his greatest work, the ‘Cosmographia’. It was the culmination of a lifetime’s study, in which he distilled the geographical information he had gathered over the past thirty years. The work would prove to be so popular that some 40 editions were published between 1544 and 1628.

Colourful side profile portrait of Sebastian Münster, a man looking away to the left and wearing a hat.