Blaeu's Carte-a-Figures Map of Africa
"Africae Nova Descriptio", Blaeu, Willem
Period: 1642 (circa)
Publication: Atlas Appendix
Color: Hand Color
22 x 16.3 inches
55.9 x 41.4 cm
This is one of the most decorative seventeenth century maps of the African continent and a superb example of the Dutch carte-a-figures style. The map is surrounded on three sides with vignettes of native peoples and nine principal cities. The Nile is shown according to Ptolemy with its sources arising in the lakes Zaire and Zaflan, the fictitious Lake Sachaf of Laurent Fries appears, as well as the R. de Spirito Santo. The map is further embellished with numerous ships, sea monsters (including a great seahorse), a compass rose and exotic animals wandering all over the continent. This is the second state of the map. Dutch text on verso, published between 1642-64.
References: Betz #57.2; Norwich #32.
Original color with minor toning and short centerfold separations in blank margins that have been archivally repaired. Remargined at left with part of neatline in facsimile, and right margin extended to accommodate framing.