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Massimo De Martini of Altea Maps.

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1 What is your focus?

Mainly maps that are unusual and tell a story. I have a broad range of maps, some dating from the 15th century, right through to maps from the last century. Separately issued maps are always fascinating.

2 What is one great discovery you’ve made?

I recently acquired an extremely rare map of the world from 1599 (shown below), being only the second known example of this map by Cristoforo Blanco. The other example is in the Bibliothèque Nationale de France. It is a large-format map on an oval projection and it is a truly exciting find.

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A rare map of the world from 1599 being only the second known example of this map by Cristoforo Blanco. The other example is in the Bibliothèque Nationale de France.

3 What is one change you would like to see in the trade?

It would be wonderful to see the return of more independent antique dealers in town, rather than the multitude of sandwich shops that have proliferated during the last decade or so. Maybe the pandemic will bring a positive shift for business after all.

4 Do you collect anything personally?

Obviously, hailing from Genoa, I collect items from that region. I also have an interest in modern paintings, which are in stark contrast to the 15th century woodblock incunabula that I am also drawn to.

5 Real ale or espresso martini?

With my surname, it has to be espresso martini!

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