Catalog Archive
Auction 118, Lot 189

"Limes Occidentis Quivira et Anian", Wytfliet, Cornelis

Subject: Western Canada & Alaska

Period: 1597 (dated)

Publication: Descriptionis Ptolemaicae augmentum

Color: Hand Color

11.5 x 9.3 inches
29.2 x 23.6 cm

This early copper plate engraving depicts the northwestern coast of North America and is generally considered the first map of Alaska, even though it is mostly an imaginary depiction. The general shape of the map is based on Gerard Mercator's world map of 1569. The mythical realms of Anian, Quivera and Tolm fill the interior and numerous place names are shown along the coastline. Several rivers are shown including a large one that flows into the sea to the north, which forms the fabled Northwest Passage. Map is adorned with a spectacular compass rose. First state with date present in cartouche.

References: Burden #107; Wagner #189.

Condition: B

Margins trimmed nearly to neatline with heavy Japanese tissue backing the map and extending top margin with hinge remnants. Two nearly invisible repairs in the seas at top and bottom. Still a great map that would be lovely framed.

Estimate: $800 - $1,000

Sold for: $1,300

Closed on 3/6/2007