Auction 128, Lot 876

"[2 Sheets] Aegyptus Antiqua", Ortelius, Abraham

Subject: Egypt

Period: 1584 (dated)

Publication: Parergon

Color: Hand Color

20.5 x 14 inches
52.1 x 35.6 cm

This stunning two-sheet map of ancient Egypt is one of the most decorative and dramatic of maps prepared by Ortelius himself. It derives from the cartographic sources of Diodor, Herodotos, Strabo and Plinius. The top sheet includes an inset of Alexandria and its surroundings, and the bottom sheet features a dedication cartouche to the humanist and medical doctor Scipio Fabio from Bologna. A large inset table lists those place names and regions of which the location was not certain. The map is decorated with spectacular strapwork cartouches, ships sailing in the Mediterranean Sea, pyramids, and a bold border. French text on verso with page numbers 107-108 placing its publication in 1587. This two-sheet map was replaced with a single sheet map of the region in 1595 and Van den Broecke estimates only 975 were published; thus this is quite scarce on the market today. Unjoined, as issued.

References: Van den Broecke #219-220.

Condition: A

Faint damp stains and a short fold separation in the blank margins.

Estimate: $1,500 - $1,800

Sold for: $1,800

Closed on 5/20/2009