Auction 129, Lot 748

"Asiae Nova Descriptio", Ortelius, Abraham

Subject: Asia

Period: 1601 (circa)

Publication: Theatrum Orbis Terrarum

Color: Hand Color

19 x 14.5 inches
48.3 x 36.8 cm

Ortelius' great map of Asia was based on his wall map of 1567, which was in turn based on the work of Gastaldi and various other sources. This map was the standard map of Asia for more than forty years. The cordiform projection shows Asia extended too far to the east, an error propagated with Ptolemy. Japan is in a 'kite' form taken from Jesuit sources. Luzon is absent from the Philippines and the mythical lake Cayamay lacus is located in southern China. There are a great number of islands in the East Indies, but are not well placed, due to the secrecy of voyages to the region. The title is emblazoned onto a large strapwork cartouche. This is the second, re-engraved plate that was published from 1575 onwards. French text on verso with large historated "C" with figures and page number 3 at bottom

References: Yeo #5; Van den Broecke #7.

Condition: B

The map is very sound with a dark, early impression. The color is oxidized giving the map a distinctive antique appearance. The left margin is a little close, there are a few tiny areas of paper abrasion and one small pin hole visible when held to light.

Estimate: $1,300 - $1,600

Sold for: $1,400

Closed on 9/23/2009