"Poli Arctici, et Circumiacentium Terrarum Descriptio Novissima", Hondius/deWit
Subject: North Pole
Period: 1715 (circa)
Color: Hand Color
19.6 x 17.1 inches
49.8 x 43.4 cm
Hondius' important map is one of the most decorative maps of the North Pole. It replaced Mercator's map in the Mercator/Hondius atlases in 1636, and incorporated much of the knowledge gained by the English in their search for a Northwest Passage to Asia. The cartography is based on Henry Briggs' depiction of Hudson Bay, showing a pair of bays in the bottom of Hudson Bay named Iames his Bay and The Great Bay of God's Deliverance. There are more names based on Hudson's explorations, including the note of Ne Ultra in an inlet at the top of the bay indicating that they could go no further there. There are several Dutch names in Labrador, many appearing for the first time on this map. The fascinating whaling scenes that surround the map also depict Dutch activity in the region. There are many types of ship and boats shown, as well as whales, seals and cormorants. This is De Wit's issue, with his imprint in the title cartouche, and re-engraved areas around Iceland and at the base of Nova Zemla.
References: Burden #246; Kershaw #104.
An excellent impression with attractive color, one unobtrusive spot below the Gulf of St. Lawrence, and a couple of minute worm holes only visible when held to light.