ASia is diuided from Europa, by the Riuer Tanaic, and also by a lyne drawen out from his fauntaines vnto Granduie, the which is a Goulph of the North De∣tean. But it is diuided from Affric, by Istmus, which is betwéene Mare Medi∣terraneum,Page [unnumbered]tetraneum, and the gulph of Arabia, the residue, the Occean and the seas do com∣passe about.
The Auncients haue manifoldly di∣uided this, but at this day, it séemeth vn∣to be, that it may stilye be diuided into fiue parts, according vnto hir Empires, by the which she is gouerned. The first part whereof, that which ioyneth is Eu∣rope, and obayeth the great Duke of Moscouia, shall be limitted with the fro∣sen sea (with the riuer of Obil) with the lake of Bitaia, and with a lyne drawen from thence to the Caspian sea, and with Istmus, which is betwéene this sea, and Pontus Eurinus. The second shall bée that which obayeth to the great Cham, Emperour of the Tartars, whose limits from the South, are Mare Caspium, the riuer Iaxartes, the mountaine Imaus: from the East and from the North, the Occean: from the West, the Kingdome of the Duke of Moscouia, alreadye spoken of. The third part, the ofspring of ye Ot∣tomans doe occuple, and containeth what land soeuer is betwéene Pontus Euri∣nus, Mare Aegeum, (now called Archi∣pelogus) and Mare Mediterianeum, Ma∣re Aegyptum, the Gulph of Arabia and Persia, the Riuer Tigris, Mare Caspi∣um, and Istnu••: which is to be séene be∣twéene this and Pontus Eurinus. Un∣der the forth shall be comprehended the kingdome of Persia, which at this daye, is gouerned by the Sophy: It hath the O•tomanus (with whom it maketh al∣most continuall warre) on the West: the Kingdome of the great Cham, on the North: and to the East, it stretcheth al∣most as farre as the riuer Indus: But on the South it is washed with the sea, which at this daye is called Mare Indi∣cum, and in times past, Mare Rubrum, the Red sea. The fifth parte shall haue the rest, which now they tearme the In∣dies, as it was also called in times past: which is not gouerned by one alone, as others are, but by many small Kings, for euerye Region thereof, hath almost his Prince: many of the which, also are fri∣butarie to the great Cham. Neither is this to be passed ouer, that certaine pla∣ces vpon the sea Coasts, which are from the gulph of Arabia, commonly called, Cabo de lampo (which thou séest to the 30. degrée of the latitude of the North,) are in manner all possessed by the Por∣tugall, or els are Tributarie vnto him.
The Ilandes which are ascribed to this Asia, among all most innumerable, these be the chiefe, Creta and Rodus, in Mare Mediterraneum: Taprobana and Zeilan in the Indian Occean, where al∣so in the remembraunce of our forefa∣thers, the Portugals discouered both the Ianae, Borneo, Celebes, Paloban, Minda∣neo, Gillano, with the Moluccis, full of spicerie. Then Iapan was found, and of late now Guinea, but this is the last: and whether it be an Ilande or fastened to the lande Antarctike, it is not eui∣dent.
Not onely among all prophane wri∣ters, as they tearme it, this parte of the earth, for the first Monarches in ye work, as of the Assyrians, Persians, Babyloni∣ans, and Medes, is greatly renowned: but also in the holy Scriptures that is more famous then the rest, for berrin not onely mankinde was created by the most blessed and almightie God: deluded and corrupted by his enimie Satan, and re∣stored by Christ our Sauiour, but also we reade that well néere all the historie of both Testaments was therein written and complete.
This Asia Strabo doth handle in sixe bookes, beginning at the 11. Ptholome setteth foorth in thrée bookes, the 5. the 6. and the 7. Likewise in 12. tables, and at∣tributeth vnto it 40. Prouinces. Of the newe Writers, none hath vniuer∣sally described it, Marcus Paulus & •e∣nel•an, Ludouicus Vartomannus, and Iohn Mandeuile, (but manye Fables are set downe of him) haue written so much of it, as they knewe worthye of knowledge trauailing ouer those Coun∣treyes, &c.