A Rare Pre-Cook Map Focusing on Australia
"Ins Kleine Gebrachte Karte von den Sud-Laendern Zur Histoire der Reisen...", Bellin, Jacques Nicolas
Period: 1753 (dated)
Color: Hand Color
10.9 x 7.9 inches
27.7 x 20.1 cm
This is one of the few 18th century maps to focus on the Australian continent prior to Cook's famous first voyage from 1768-1771. Mainland Australia is connected to both Tasmania (Land Van Diemen) and Papua New Guinea (Neu Guinea). Along the imaginary eastern coastline is a note that translates as: "I suppose that the land of Diemen can join with the land of the Holy Ghost, but this is without proof." A partial coastline of New Zealand is shown peeking out of the corner of the map, with a note that it was discovered by Abel Tasmand in 1642 and speculation that it might be part of a great southern continent. This is an important map of Australia depicting the interesting theories made prior to exploration of the region later in the century. This example is from a German edition of Prevost's Histoire Generale des Voyages.
References: cf. Tooley (Australia) p. 24, #156 (French edition).
A nice impression on a clean, bright sheet with light printer's ink residue.