[RUSSIAN ARCTIC IN 1552] Pribrezhya Ledovitogo i Belogo morei s ikh pritokami po knige Bolshogo Chertezha [i.e. Coasts of the Icy and the White Seas with Their Tributaries According to the Book to the Great Map]

St. Petersburg: Typ. of Maikov, 1875. Item #314

265 pp. 24,5x15,5 cm. Modern (period style) half leather. Weak old library stamps on the title page and p. 1, mild foxing of the text, last page with the repair of the lower outer margin. Otherwise a very good copy.

Very rare (only two paper copies found in Worldcat). This is the first edition of the first comprehensive scientific representation of the Russian Arctic coast according to the Kniga Bolshomu Chertezhu (i.e. The Book to the Great Map) – the first Russian full geographical description of the country compiled in 1552 on the order of Ivan the Terrible. The book was written to supplement and comment on the ‘Great Map’ – a very large manuscript map of Russia and the nearby countries created for the use of the tsar and his councillors, which was lost in the 17th century because of the active use. In 1852 Russian Geographical Society announced a contest for the recreation of the ancient map of Russia according to the Book to the Great Map. It was a statistician Yevlampy Ogorodnikov (1816-1884) who presented the first comprehensive analysis of geography of the Lapland shore of the Kola peninsula in the Book to the Great Map (1869), and later of the whole Arctic coast of Russia from the Kola Peninsula to the Yugorsky Strait – the ‘Iron Gateway’ into the Kara Sea. His research titled ‘‘Coasts of the Icy and the White Seas…’’ was published in the Proceedings of the Russian Geographical Society, Department of Ethnography (vol. VII), and as an offprint the same year.

The chapters describe the north-eastern parts of the European Russia in general, then talk in great detail about various native tribes inhabiting the region: Yam’ (jäämit), Yugra, Pechora, the Samoyeds, Perm, Sum’, and the Karelians. Most part of the book is occupied with the description of the Arctic Russia rom coast to coast: Lapland shores, Karelia shore, Dvina River with tributaries (Solovetsky monastery, Yemtsa River, Vaga River, Pinega River, Sukhona River, Lake Kubenskoye, Vychegda River, Mezen River, Kara River, Pustozyorsk City, Kanin Peninsula, Kolguyev Island, Vaygach Island and others). In the end the author briefly analyses the descriptions of the Arctic Russia in the 16th-17th century western European sources. The book is supplemented with the Index of geographical and ethnographical names. For his research of the Book to the Great Map Ogorodnikov received a golden medal of the Russian Geographical Society and was elected its member.

Only two paper copies found in Worldcat (Columbia University and Wheaton College).

Price: $950.00

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