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Maps, Myths, and Men: the Story of the Vinland Map (04 Edition)by Kirsten A. Seaver
Synopses & ReviewsPlease note that used books may not include additional media (study guides, CDs, DVDs, solutions manuals, etc.) as described in the publisher comments.
The "Vínland Map" first surfaced on the antiquarian market in 1957 and the map's authenticity has been hotly debated ever since—in controversies ranging from the anomalous composition of the ink and the map's lack of provenance to a plethora of historical and cartographical riddles. Maps, Myths, and Men is the first work to address the full range of this debate. Focusing closely on what the map in fact shows, the book contains a critique of the 1965 work The Vinland Map and the Tartar Relation; scrutinizes the marketing strategies used in 1957; and covers many aspects of the map that demonstrate it is a modern fake, such as literary evidence and several scientific ink analyses performed between 1967 and 2002. The author explains a number of the riddles and provides evidence for both the identity of the mapmaker and the source of the parchment used, and she applies current knowledge of medieval Norse culture and exploration to counter widespread misinformation about Norse voyages to North America and about the Norse world picture.
"In a superlative piece of cross-disciplinary detective work, Norwegian independent scholar Seaver deconstructs the machinations, manipulations and odd stroke of genius that have played into the story of the Vinland map. Allegedly dating from 1440 and ostensibly showing extensive medieval Norse exploration of the North American coasts, the map rocketed out of obscurity — 'the black hole of provenance' — with the publication of a lavishly illustrated volume entitled The Vinland Map and the Tartar Relation in 1965. The stunning revelation of the map — and the publication of a volume prepared with peculiar secrecy by scholars from top-name institutions — received intense international press coverage, but was greeted with skepticism in many quarters. A meticulous guide, Seaver leads us through the minutiae of ink analysis, handwriting and strangely located wormholes. Her investigation culminates in the doomed Austrian monastery of Stella Matutina, where a brilliant Jesuit cartographer, Josef Fischer (1858 — 1944), worked on a 'jeu d'esprit' that would sabotage Nazi propaganda by 'proving' the global reach of the medieval Catholic church while flattering the Nazis' interest in Norse origins. Through his well-intentioned forgery, Fischer set in motion a different kind of legend. Once German soldiers forced their way into Stella Matutina, the gates opened to a world of pilfering, profiteering and eventually marketing blitzkrieg. Illus." Publishers Weekly (Copyright 2004 Reed Business Information, Inc.)
Book News Annotation:
The map, which surfaced in 1957 and was prepared in secret and published suddenly by Yale University in 1965, was purported to be from about 1440 and show parts of North America that Icelandic sagas say were discovered about the year 1000. Its authenticity has been bitterly debated ever since. British historian, novelist, translator, and Fellow of the Royal Geographical Society, Seaver reviews the evidence, including the history of the Norse in the North Atlantic, as well as the history of the map itself, which she believes is a modern forgery.
Annotation ©2004 Book News, Inc., Portland, OR (booknews.com)
The "Vínland Map" first surfaced on the antiquarian market in 1957 and the map's authenticity has been hotly debated ever since—in controversies ranging from the anomalous composition of the ink and the map's lack of provenance to a plethora of historical and cartographical riddles. Maps, Myths, and Men is the first work to address the full range of this debate.
About the Author
In a superlative piece of cross-disciplinary detective work, Norwegian independent scholar Seaver deconstructs the machinations, manipulations, and odd strokes of genius that have played into the story of the Vinland map.”—Publishers Weekly
Seaver has created the definitive portrait of the Vinland Map controversy and has shown us a route home.”—Science Magazine
...a fascinating and very readable investigation...”—Viking Heritage Magazine
In Maps, Myths, and Men, Kirsten A. Seaver provides a supremely well-researched and documented account of the maps nearly forty-years of public controversy....As well as providing the most detailed account and analysis of the map available, Seaver has also provided a book which allows historians and scholars to reflect more widely on the ways in which personal lives and situations interfere with and inform objective scholarship.”—Itinerario
"...the sustained and comprehensive argument presented here is a masterly synthesis that should represent the last word on one of the most contentious debates in modern medieval scholarship."—Speculum
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