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The Parergon is a historical atlas which contains maps relating to antiquity, part of Western Europe’s first major atlas,the Ortelius Theatrum Orbis Terrarum. Several versions have been released. Here is a double page of the Latin version (Antwerp, Plantin, 1591, colophon 1592), coloured with brush.

A total of 4.075 copies of the Tempe map were printed. The whole scene is a combination of truth, mythology and fantasy, and also a combination of Antiquity (e.g. the sacrifices, costumes) and Renaissance (e.g. architecture, ships, books, violoncello),without specific scale, a bird’s eye view. It is a personal and rich representation, with an accurate and poetic writing. Tempe is considered as one of the Parergon ‘mythical maps’. On the back there is a text in Latin about the ”Paradise of Thessaly”, which refers to ancient sources.

Abraham Ortelius (1527 – 1589) (from a drawing by)
Frans Hogenberg (1535 – 1590) printmaker
Tempe – coloured engraving – 1590
Double page from Parergon of Theatrum orbis terrarum.
Antwerp. Plantin, (colophon 1592) 3 parts in one
volume (45 cm / 31 cm) Latin edition 1592.
Image: 36.4 cm x 47.6 cm
Sheet: 45 cm x 62 cm
Flemish school
No 882 – Αcquisition 2010