Page:Early voyages to Terra Australis.djvu/35

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xvii
INTRODUCTION.

respecting the early indications of Australia. On these maps we find laid down an extensive development of the great Terra Australis Incognita trending northward to New Guinea; with which, on some of these maps, it is made to be continuous, while on others it is divided from it; and on the northermost portion of this remarkably delineated land occur the legends: "Beach provincia aurifera." "Lucach regnum." "Maletur regnum scatens aromatibus." "Vastissimas hie esse regiones ex M. Pauli Veneti et Ludovici Vartomanni scriptis peregrinationibus liquido constat."

We have already explained from Marsden's notes the reasonable rendering of the name of Lucach or Lochac. The name of Beach, or rather Boeach, is another form of the same name, which crept into the Basle edition of Marco Polo of 1532, and was blunderingly repeated by the cartographers; while for Maletur we have the suggestion of the Burgomaster Witsen, in his Noord en Oost Tartarye, fol. 169, that it is taken from Maleto, on the north side of the island of Timor, a suggestion rendered null by the fact, apparently unknown to Witsen, that Maletur, as already stated, was but a misspelling in the Basle edition for Malaiur. The sea in which, on these early maps, this remarkable land is made to lie, is called Mare Lantchidol, another perplexing piece of misspelling upon which all the cartographers have likewise stumbled, and which finds its explanation in the Malay words Laut Kidol, or Chidol, "the South Sea. As, however, this striking protrusion to the northward of