Americae Retectio [Discovery of America]



Americae Retectio [Discovery of America]


Collaert was a Flemish engraver, here copying a design by Stradanus (Jan van der Straeten of Bruges, 1523-1605). Stradanus was a Flemish mannerist artist active in Florence. After 1550, he worked for the Medici and was the teacher of Antonio Tempesta.

The two Italian discoverers of America (Americus Vespuccius Florentinus and Christophorus Columbus Genuensis, of Florence and Genoa respectively) are seen in portrait medallions flanking a globe map unveiled by personifications of Flora and Janus. Oceanus lies beneath the globe, which shows the Atlantic Ocean framed by the new and old worlds. Triumphal chariots emerge from the sea to far left and right. That on the left is drawn by lions and carries an armored knight with a shield bearing the fleur de lis of France. That on the right drawn by four horses shows Poseidon with a shield bearing a cross. A topographical bird’s eye view map of the coastline of Italy from Livorno to Genoa to Savona stretches across the foreground. Florence is depicted in some detail in the lower left hand corner.

Artist, engraver and publisher’s names are in the lower left margin: “Joannes Stradan. inven. Adrianus Collaert sculp. Phls. [Philippus] Galle excudit.” The names of the patron and artist are on the lower right: “Ludovico et Aloyzio Almaniis fratrib(us) nobil(is) Flor. Joannes Strada. Inven. D.D.” An inscription in Latin capitals appears across the bottom margin: ‘Quis potis est dignum pollenti pectore carmen / Condere pro rerum maiestate hisque repertis.” This is the first of 4 plates in the volume. The number 1 is in the lower right-hand corner indicating the plate number. The printer Philippe Galle (1537-1612) worked in Antwerp.


Adrian Collaert (Flemish, ca. 1560-1618), after Johannes Stradanus (Flemish, 1523-1605)


Picker Art Gallery, Colgate University, Hamilton, NY


ca. 1600


Purchase of the Friends of the Visual Arts


11 x 8 1/4 in.







Spatial Coverage


Temporal Coverage

16th century



Adrian Collaert (Flemish, ca. 1560-1618), after Johannes Stradanus (Flemish, 1523-1605), “Americae Retectio [Discovery of America],” Selected Old Masters from the Picker Art Gallery, accessed April 28, 2017,