Catalog Archive
Auction 118, Lot 416

"Carte de la Californie Suivant I. La Carte Manuscrite de l'Amerique de Mathieu Neron Pecci Olen Dresse a Florence en 1604, II. Sanson 1656, III. De L'Isle Amerique Sept. 1700, IV. Le Pere Kino Jesuite en 1705, V. La Societe des Jesuites en 1767", Robert de Vaugondy, Didier

Subject: California and Baja Mexico

Period: 1777 (published)

Publication: Diderot's Encyclopedie (Supplement)

Color: Black & White

15.3 x 11.5 inches
38.9 x 29.2 cm

When Charles Joseph Panckoucke took over publication of Diderot's Encyclopedie in 1768, he promised to correct the cursory treatment of geography for which the first seventeen volumes had been criticized, with emphasis on the discoveries of the last 25 years. He employed Samuel Engel, a Swiss geographer, to write a series of articles about the northern regions and Didier Robert de Vaugondy to prepare ten maps to illustrate them. Engel rejected the De la Fonte Northwest Passage discoveries and believed the most sensible route from the Atlantic to the Pacific was along the north coast of Siberia. These maps illustrate the discoveries and various cartographic theories concerning the Pacific Northwest, East Asia and the North Pacific Ocean and include some of the most interesting comparative cartography of the eighteenth century

These five depictions of California on one sheet present a fascinating cartographic history of California. The first map reproduces Neron Pecci's map of 1604 showing the peninsula with a ragged coastline and place names derived from Cabrillo's voyage of 1542-3. The second map is a detail from Sanson's 1656 map showing the island of California with place names from the voyage of Vizcaino. Map three is from Delisle's map of America in 1700 with the question of California's insularity left open to interpretation. Map four is Kino's important map of 1705 that finally ended the cartographic myth. Finally map five is a portion of a Spanish map, showing the Jesuit explorations, that first appeared in Miguel Venegas' Noticia de la California in 1757, which is the first published history of California.

References: McLaughlin #241; Fite & Freeman #52; Heckrotte & Sweetkind #15; Pedley #474.

Condition: A+

Estimate: $650 - $750

Sold for: $500

Closed on 3/6/2007