Society for the History of Discoveries

Marcotte, Didier, ed. Humanisme et Culture Géographique á l’Epoque du Concile de Constance. (Terrarum Orbis. History of the Representation of Space in Text and Image. General Editor, Patrick Gautier Dalché). Turnhout, Belgium: Brepols, 2002. 371p. ISBN 2503511228.

This substantial volume brings together the twelve papers given at a meeting held at the University of Reims in France, in 1999. Many of them concern the career of the early fifteenth-century Reims cleric and humanist, Guillaume Fillastre, and his library, and the later papers often deal with subjects that concern readers of this review. Christiane Deluz thus writes about the geographical conceptions of Fillastre and of Pierre d’Ailly, Giuseppe Ragone writes about Cristoforo dei Buondelmonti, and Louis Duval-Arnould writes about the manuscript versions of the “Geography” of Ptolemy.

This is a volume which brings together many studies on the philosophical underpinnings of the geographical concepts that would be developed in the time of European expansion, beginning with the Portuguese on the west coast of Africa, and then greatly accelerating after 1492. It is therefore an important work for any libraries concerned with the history of European expansion.

David Buisseret
The University of Texas at Arlington 

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