Catalog Archive
Auction 114, Lot 13

"[Lot of 5] Typus Orbis Terrarum [and] Americae Descriptio [and] Asia [and] Africae Descriptio [and] Europae Nova Tabula", Cluver/Jansson

Subject: World & Continents

Period: 1661 (published)

Publication: Introductionis in Universam Geographicam

Color: Hand Color

8 x 5.5 inches
20.3 x 14 cm
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Fine matched set of maps that were originally engraved by Abraham Goos in 1628 for Jansson's editions of the Atlas Minor and then published in this edition of Cluver's popular geography. This interesting set is illustrative of the fluctuating theories prevalent during this period of discovery.

1) "Typus Orbis Terrarum" is a beautiful double hemisphere world map surrounded in strapwork borders into which are set an armillary sphere and a compass rose. The map features the island of California with no coastline continuing to the northwest. Terra Australis has a broken coastline and a notation that ends with the signature of the engraver, A. Goos. Four lines of Latin text balance the title cartouche at bottom.

2) The most dominant feature of "Americae Descriptio" is the curious depiction of the west coast of North America, which is completely bisected by an unnamed straight (Northwest Passage), possibly derived from reports of Juan de Fuca's disputed voyage. The bulging northwest coast of North America continues another 65 degrees and is separated from Asia by a narrow Fretum Anian. These features were derived from the Van den Keere and Plancius globe of 1614 and this is the first time they appear on a map of the Americas. Previous maps had depicted the supposed Northwest Passage through the Strait of Anian. Other interesting features include the St. Lawrence River flowing from a small lake in the west, no Great Lakes, and an area of shading in Virginia alluding to the possibility of a Verrazano-type inland sea.

3) "Asia," though also engraved by Goos, strongly resembles Pieter van den Keere's configuration with Japan on the Teixeira model and the long island of Korea.

4) "Africae Descriptio" is based largely on the work of Henricus Hondius, with the typical antiquated geography of the sixteenth and early seventeenth centuries.

5) "Europae Nova Tabula" shows the discoveries of Willem Barents in his quest to find a Northeast Passage to Asia.

References: World, Shirley #325; America, Burden #221; Asia, Yeo #21.

Condition: A

Near fine with lovely later color. Couple of repaired tears in blank margins, none affecting maps.

Estimate: $3,000 - $4,000

Sold for: $2,400

Closed on 3/1/2006