"America Septentrionalis", Hondius, Henricus
Subject: North America
Period: 1639 (published)
Publication: Nouvel Atlas
Color: Hand Color
21.8 x 18.3 inches
55.4 x 46.5 cm
This is the rare first state of this stunning map of North America that had great influence in perpetuating the theory of California as an island due to its wide distribution through this preeminent Dutch publishing firm. The map is a careful compilation of various sources and represents the state of cartographic knowledge at the time. The insular California is derived directly from Henry Briggs, as is the depiction of the Arctic. The island of California is shown with a great number of place names, including po. de S. Diego (San Diego) and Po. Sir Francisco Draco (San Francisco). The Rio del Nort originates in a large western lake and flows incorrectly into the Mare Vermio. The cartography of the Gulf of Mexico and Florida is based on Hessel Gerritsz. On the east coast the region identified as Novum Belgium is greatly elongated, Iames Towne and a few place names from John Smith's map appear in Virginia and Nova Anglia. There is a single Lac des Iroquois in the Great Lakes region. The map is richly embellished with a variety of animals throughout the interior, including deer, horses, buffalo, rabbits and bear. The oceans are teeming with ships and sea monsters. The title cartouche features several Native Americans and the blank cartouche features two comely mermaids. French text on verso.
References: Burden #245; McLaughlin #6; Tooley (America), pl. 28, Goss (NA) #30.
A sharp impression on a sturdy sheet with a couple of spots of foxing and a toned centerfold. The margins have a couple of short tears, just shy of the map.