This beautifully illustrated book on rare and important antique maps of Japan from the Cortazzi Collection provides a unique historical narrative on how the archipelago developed in the eyes and minds of the world. From the first European-made map of Japan, published as a woodblock in Venice in 1528, to maps made in Japan for domestic use, the book gives a rich visual account of how cartography shaped the way in which the world contextualized Japan over the centuries.
Described in the 13th-century travelogue, The Travels of Marco Polo, as a nation abundant in gold, Japan has continued to be a source of interest and inspiration for many in decades to come.
Sir Hugh Cortazzi, a former British Ambassador to Japan, began collecting old maps of Japan from the mid-60s. The Cortazzi map collection, now in the care of the Lisa Sainsbury Library at the Sainsbury Institute for the Study of Japanese Arts and Cultures in Norwich, consists of over 60 historical maps.
This book is a commemorative volume to mark the tenth anniversary of the Lisa Sainsbury Library where many of the Cortazzi map collection was placed on display at a special exhibition held in London in 2013.