"Tabula Magellanica, Qua Tierrae del Fuego...", Montanus, Arnoldus
Subject: Strait of Magellan, Tierra del Fuego
Period: 1671 (circa)
Publication: De Nieuwe en Onbekende Weereld
Color: Hand Color
14.2 x 11.5 inches
36.1 x 29.2 cm
Montanus' work was perhaps the greatest illustrated book on the New World produced in the seventeenth century. It contained over one hundred beautifully engraved plates, views, and maps of North and South America. The plates vividly depict forts, festivals, occupations, Dutch fleets, battles, religious rites, and customs of the native inhabitants. This important work was translated into German by Olivier Dapper, and into English by John Ogilby. Several of the plates were later acquired by Pierre Vander Aa.
This is one of the most elaborately decorated maps focusing on the tip of South America with the Strait of Magellan and Le Maire Strait. Several strange creatures are shown in the interior, including rheas that are being stalked by hunters, penguins, a giant anteater and many minutely engraved natives. Numerous ships are engaged in combat in the waters off the west coast. The map is further adorned with a pair of compass roses, and four beautiful cartouches. The top two cartouches are supported by a host of putti and contain notes with keys to the map. The entire bottom of the map is decorated with the distance scale and title cartouche replete with a geographer and his globe, mermaids, putti, a river God spilling vessel with the waters of the area, and the allegorical figure of Navigation, holding a steering rudder.
A nice impression with attractive color on watermarked paper. There is minor offsetting and two small worm tracks in upper cartouche that have been professionally infilled.