Auction 129, Lot 10

"The English Atlas", Pitt, Moses

Subject: Title Pages

Period: 1680 (published)


Color: Black & White

11.5 x 18 inches
29.2 x 45.7 cm

This striking allegorical title page, designed by Zacharias Webbers, features mythical figures examining a large globe centered on Europe and Africa. Neptune stands to the left of the globe and on the right stands Cybele, the mother goddess of the earth with her turreted crown and a lion at her feet. In the foreground, a seated muse represents history or geography, and in the background Atlas is shown holding a celestial globe on his shoulders and putti hold aloft the drape-style title cartouche. Manuscript, red ruled lines form a border around the engraving, as is common for this sheet. Moses Pitt's plan for a large world atlas on the basis of Jansson's work met with financial failure and he was only able to complete four of the planned 12 volumes - this being the title page for Volume I. The plate was used later by Elwe and Ottens.


Condition: A

A stunning impression with minor soil in margins.

Estimate: $350 - $450

Sold for: $325

Closed on 9/23/2009