Auction 140, Lot 40

"The World on Mercator's Projection", Tallis, John

Subject: World

Period: 1851 (circa)


Color: Hand Color

13.8 x 10.5 inches
35.1 x 26.7 cm

The maps from The Illustrated Atlas were first published in serial form to a target audience that led insular lives due to the expense and hardship of travel. All that changed as the progress of the nineteenth century brought swift and dramatic changes in public awareness of far away places. Tallis' maps no doubt played an important role in this dramatic awakening. These maps not only provided up-to-date geographical knowledge, but also used vignette views within the map's design to show the native people and their occupations, cities and points of interest. The maps hark back to a cartographic tradition from the Dutch mapmakers of the seventeenth century with finely engraved decorative borders. The maps were drawn and engraved by John Rapkin with views drawn and engraved by a number of prominent artists. The maps were issued as a complete volume from 1851 until about 1865. Some of the maps were also published in other history books published by Tallis including British Colonies and, without the vignettes, in geographical dictionaries and encyclopedias until about 1880.

This is a very handsome steel-engraved world map that was produced from the same plate used to celebrate the explorations by Captain James Cook. This issue has seven vignettes rather than only one vignette of Cook's ship Endeavour. The beautifully rendered vignettes on this issue show important places and cities of the world including London, Constantinople, Niagara, the Pyramids of Ghizah, Port Neuf in Paris, Gibraltar, and Vesuvius. In the seas the "Steam Routes to the Colonies" are shown in color. The map was drawn and engraved by J. Rapkin, the illustrations are by H. Warren, engraved by J.B. Allen. Published by the London Printing and Publishing Company.


Condition: B+

Original outline color with light toning and a couple of tiny centerfold separations that have been archivally repaired.

Estimate: $180 - $220

Sold for: $140

Closed on 5/23/2012