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Twelfth Night is not included in Francis Meres's list of comedies, assigned in his Palladia Tamia of l598, to Shakespeare.
In the second scene of the third act of Twelfth Night Maria says of Malvolio, that "he does smile his face into more lines than are in the new map with the augmentation of the Indies." This has been regarded as an allusion to some one of many maps contained in the folio volume of the translation by William Philip of "J. Huighen van Linschoten his Discours of Voyages into the Easte and West Indies, in foure Bookes," published in l598. The reference is really to a Map of the World—"the New Map "—published in l600. This was the first Map of the World engraved in England on Mercator's projection. It was given in that year by Hakluyt in his "Voyages." The latest geographical discovery recorded on it wa3 of Northern Nova Zemlya, made by the Dutchman Barents in l596. Earlier in the same second scene of the Third Act of Twelfth Night Fabian says to Sir Andrew Aguecheek, "You are now sailed into the north of my lady's opinion; where you will hang like an icicle on a Dutchman's beard." Shakespeare seems, therefore, to have been lately reading Hakluyt. The year of the New Map was also the year of the foundation of the India Company, which then began its trade by fitting out four ships, and obtained its first charter in December, l600. Use was made, therefore, of all information that could be obtained from Linschoten or others in aid of a right mapping of the Indies and the map excelled all that had preceded it in its delineation of the Eastern seas.
Of Mercator it may be said, by the way, that the name was the Latinised surname of Gerhard Kauffmann, who died in l594. He invented his projection in l556. Edward Wright, who died in 16l5, first applied Kauffmann's idea to Navigation. Wright published in l599 "Certain Errors in Navigation Detected and Corrected," and