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University of Groningen Library

Olaus Magnus’ Monstrous Creatures

24 September 2021
The sea-pig in the Carta Marina
The sea-pig in the Carta Marina

The U4Society Network is an European University Network of Ghent University (BE), University of Göttingen (DE), University of Groningen (NL), University of Tartu (EE), and Uppsala University (SE).

The Special Collections at the University of Groningen Library and Uppsala University are linked through their ownership of the two most famous works of the 16th-century Swedisch roman catholic scientist, cartographer and writer Olaus Magnus. This concerns his Carta Marina, printed in Venice in 1539 and now held by Uppsala University, and his book Description of the Northern Peoples (Historia De Gentibus Septentrionalibus, Earumque Diversis Statibus, Conditionibus, Moribus, Ritibus, Superstitionibus, Disciplinis) printed in Rome in 1555 and now held by the University of Groningen. The two objects are closely related, and this relationship becomes evident when focusing on one of the most interesting aspects of both works: their emphasis on sea monsters.

Participating in the Things That Matter summer school of Prof. Raingard Esser, students Sanna Nyholt and Madelief Albers researched both works. They describe their findings in the beautifully illustrated online exhibition Olaus Magnus' monstrous creatures.

Last modified:30 September 2021 1.16 p.m.
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