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The Hunt-Lenox Globe (Public Domain)

Here Be Dragons: Exploring the Hunt-Lenox Globe (Video)

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The Hunt-Lenox globe is a remarkable historical artifact that holds a significant place in cartographic history. As the second-oldest surviving terrestrial globe, it offers invaluable insights into the world's geographical understanding during its creation in the early 16th century. What makes this globe even more intriguing is its distinction as the oldest known globe to depict the Americas, reflecting the era's gradual exploration and discovery of the New World. Beyond its depiction of geographical features, the Hunt-Lenox globe captivates with its intricate details and enigmatic symbols.

Among these hidden gems is the Latin phrase, "HC SVNT DRACONES," which translates to "here be dragons." In medieval cartography, cartographers used such phrases to mark uncharted or dangerous territories, sparking the imagination of adventurous souls with mythical beasts and unexplored wonders. Today, this treasured globe resides in the New York Public Library, where it continues to captivate historians, geographers, and visitors alike. Preserving the globe in a prestigious institution allows scholars and the public to marvel at its historical significance and ponder the early visions of the world that have shaped our modern understanding.

Top image: The Hunt-Lenox Globe (Public Domain)

By Robbie Mitchell

Robbie Mitchell's picture


I’m a graduate of History and Literature from The University of Manchester in England and a total history geek. Since a young age, I’ve been obsessed with history. The weirder the better. I spend my days working as a freelance... Read More

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