Cantino's map is a representation of the world as understood by the Portuguese in the early 16th century. Although its authorship is unknown, it is named after Alberto Cantino, an agent for the Duke of Ferrara who took the map to Italy following his service as secretary to King Manuel I of Portugal.
The information contained in the map had a huge impact on the trade relations between both countries. It includes partial details of regions that had hardly been explored at that time, such as Brazil. The African continent appears as a whole, and it shows a territory that could be Florida, which was not discovered until 1523. This could point to clandestine Portuguese explorations, or indeed an erroneous representation of Asia merged with America.
The work preserved at the Naval Museum is a reproduction of the original, housed in the Biblioteca Estense Universitaria library in Modena.