Auction 117, Lot 115

"Accurata delineatio celeberrimae Regionis Ludovicianae vel Gallice Louisiane ol Canadae et Floridae adpellatione in Septemtrionali America descripta quae hodie nomine fluminis Mississippi vel St. Louis…", Seutter, Matthias

Subject: Colonial North America and Caribbean

Period: 1740 (circa)


Color: Hand Color

22 x 19 inches
55.9 x 48.3 cm

Bold map of the eastern part of North America focusing on the Mississippi River and the Great Lakes. Like many maps of the period, Labrador and Baffin Island are rather confused. A large inset of the Gulf Coast shows many forts and Indian villages. The most interesting feature of the map is the elaborate title cartouche. It depicts an allegorical, satirical scene of the infamous Mississippi Bubble investment scheme with a female personification of Fortuna pouring jewels and riches forth, while she is perched precariously upon a ball, signifying the uncertainty of fortune. Cherubs above the cartouche are issuing stock for the company, and another group is blowing bubbles in the foreground surrounded by piles of worthless stocks. In the background, desperate investors climb a small tree and fling themselves out of it, and in the foreground more disconsolate investors wail and bemoan their fates as one tries to impale himself on his sword. Above them, a cherub upends an empty money-bag.

References: Portinaro & Knirsch #117.

Condition: B

A stunning, dark impression with a few tiny, filled wormholes. The margins have been trimmed, but there is sufficient margin for framing. Professionally backed with Japanese tissue with some very light foxing and damp stain in Gulf Coast inset.

Estimate: $2,500 - $3,000

Sold for: $2,400

Closed on 12/6/2006