Maffei, Giovanni Pietro, 1533-1603
Historiarum Indicarum Libri XVI. : Selectarum item ex India epistolarum, eodem interprete, libri IV.
Accessit Ignatii Loiolae vita.
Coloniæ Agippinæ : in Officina Birckmannica, sumptibus Arnoldi Mylii, MDXCIII. [Cologne : Arnold Mylius, 1593]. Second Cologne edition.
Small folio, contemporary calf with embossed armorial device to boards, ruled in blind, rebacked, spine with raised bands; edges stained blue, later endpapers, title with woodcut printer’s device, manuscript inscription lower margin; woodcut initials and tail-pieces; pp 541, , folding world map, 255 x 480 mm, based on that of Ortelius published in 1570; the map was not included in the first Cologne edition of 1589, nor in the original Florence edition of 1588.
Maffei’s account of the Portuguese discoveries in the West and East Indies and the Jesuit missions. The second Cologne edition retains the folio format of the 1588 edition, and is the only Cologne edition to contain the important world map; the map is missing in most copies which appear for sale, being a prized object for map collectors. Maffei’s account of Japan was enthusiastically endorsed by Alessandro Valignano, in a letter sent from Macau in 1603: “Of all those who have so far written about Japan, none has done it with greater precision or in better order than Father G.P. Maffei.”
Cordier, Japonica, 63; de Backer-Sommervogel, V, 298; Streit, IV, p. 1070; Sabin, 43772; Alden, 593.38