Auction 137, Lot 472

"Freti Magellanici ac novi Freti vulgo le Maire Exactissima Delineatio", Mercator/Hondius

Subject: South America - Southern

Period: 1630 (circa)


Color: Black & White

19.1 x 14.5 inches
48.5 x 36.8 cm

This is a beautifully decorated map of the tip of South America with the Strait of Magellan and Le Maire Strait. The strategic importance of the place and the difficulties of navigation made this a notable chart, although it is not very accurate. The map graphically depicts the rugged mountainous terrain and the coastlines of Tierra del Fuego are incomplete. Notations describe the first Dutch expedition through the strait and a description of giants of vast magnitude said to inhabit the region, with one such giant depicted next to a Dutchman. At the right is the Strait of Le Maire named after Jacob Le Maire, a Dutch navigator who transited the area in 1615-1616 with Willem Schouten. The map is richly decorated with galleons, sea monsters, penguins and two sea lions shown with fish tails and lion's heads.

References: cf. Moreland & Bannister p. 255.

Condition: C+

Toned, trimmed close to neatline, and mounted on old paper to enable framing. There are a few printer's creases along centerfold and some stains. A tear that enters map image 3.5" at bottom has been closed on verso with archival tape, and there are a few small holes, chips and a tear in lower blank margin.

Estimate: $200 - $240

Sold for: $110

Closed on 9/14/2011