NICOLĂ’ Zeno (1326-1402) and ANTONIO Zeno (d.1403) were two Venetian brothers whose supposed voyage to the north Atlantic and Nova Scotia - invented and publicized by a descendant in 1558 - provided the basis for a map whose fraudulent data was considered genuine for more than fifty years. The 1558 Zeno map's mythical islands and place names were propagated not only on maps produced by Mercator and Ortelius in the 16th century but even on the maps of Blaeu and other preeminent mapmakers well into the 17th century. Among the blatant lies to appear on the map is the utterly imaginary island of Frisland, shown with greater detail than Iceland, an island widely reputed to actually exist.

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