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Portolan Charts

1489 Canepa Portolan Chart

Africa

Seven tents appear in the interior of the portolan chart, four in Africa, two north of the Black Sea and one slightly west of it. There are no rulers shown in the tents, as are found on some other portolan charts.

Other decorations on the interior include cities, mountains, flags, lakes, and rivers. A researcher finds many challenges on a portolan chart such as this one, not the least identifying place-names on it.

Place-names on the northern coast of Africa include Seren, One, Arzau, Brischa, Bona, Bizerta, eastward to Tripoli de Barbaria, Tolometa, Luco, Alexandria, and Damiata (many of these places have been identified).

Decorations in Africa include a White Tower, views of cities "Termisen," "Babilonia" and one unnamed city in the middle of a lake. (These places have not been identified on modern maps.)

Use the magnifying glass to see African details on the southern section below. 

Under the magnifying glass: