Ruling the Waves
Emperor Maximilian I, the Search for Islands & the
Transformation of the European World Picture, C. 1500
Bibliotheca Humanistica & Reformatorica Vol. LXIII

By Harald Kleinschmidt
March 2008
HES & De Graaf
Distributed by Coronet Books Inc.
ISBN: 9789061940203
483 pages, Illustrated, 6 1/4 x 10"
$297.50 Hardcover

In this work Kleinschmidt is tracing the political implications of the transformation of the European world picture in the age of Emperor Maximilian I. It is relevant for Renaissance political and cultural history. At closer inspection Maximilian turns out to have been a crucial though much underestimated figure in the context of the changes of the world picture during his time.

Not only was he continuously and persistently involved in activities through which these changes were provoked. He also issued and authorized the most comprehensive sources relevant to the impact that the changes of the world picture had on politics and international relations. This work describes the exploration travels around the world, ordered by Maximilian, among which were the Portuguese expeditions to Ethiopia and India.

The study proceeds chronologically in three parts, describing first (A) in brief the aspects of the emerging structure of territorial rule, concepts of universalism attached to the Roman Empire and the world picture during the Middle Ages, followed by part B which examines the changes of the world picture and Maximilian's role (the Portuguese and Spanish Expeditions) in it. The last section (C) surveys the emerging of the new world order, the transformation of the Roman Empire as an institution of universal rule and the consolidation of territorial politics during the first half of the sixteenth century


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