Yale University Library

Beinecke Rare Book & Manuscript Library

Beinecke Digital Collections

Jan Huyghen van Linschoten

Jan Huyghen van Linschoten (1563 – 8 February 1611) was a Dutch merchant, trader and historian. An alternative (modern Dutch) spelling of his second name is ''Huijgen''.

He travelled extensively along the East Indies' regions under Portuguese influence and served as the Portuguese Viceroy's secretary in Goa between 1583 and 1588. He is credited with publishing in Europe important classified information about Asian trade and navigation that was hidden by the Portuguese. In 1596 he published a book, ''Itinerario'' (later published as an English edition as ''Discours of Voyages into Y East & West Indies'') which graphically displayed for the first time in Europe detailed maps of voyages to the East Indies, particularly India. During his stay in Goa, abusing the trust put in him by the Viceroy, Jan Huyghens meticulously copied the top-secret charts page-by-page. Even more crucially, Jan Huyghens provided nautical data like currents, deeps, islands and sandbanks, which was absolutely vital for safe navigation, along with coastal depictions to guide the way. The publication of the navigational routes enabled the passage to the East Indies to be opened to trading by the Dutch, French and the English. As a consequence, The Dutch East India Company and British East India Company would break the 16th-century monopoly enjoyed by the Portuguese on trade with the East Indies.
Showing 1 - 16 of 50 for search: 'Linschoten, Jan Huygen van, 1563-1611', query time: 0.39s
View: List list Grid grid

Help

Expand Your Search

Search our local catalog, finding aids, and more.


Need assistance?

Ask a librarian.