Blaeu's Carte-a-Figures Map of Africa in Full Original Color
"Africae Nova Descriptio", Blaeu, Willem
Period: 1631 (published)
Publication: Appendix Theatri…
Color: Hand Color
21.7 x 16.1 inches
55.1 x 40.9 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. Latin text on verso.
References: Betz #57.2; Norwich #32; Van der Krogt (Vol. II) #8600:2.
Original color, with some cracks caused by the oxidation of the green pigment, all of which have been archivally repaired on verso. A centerfold separation that enters 3" into map at bottom has been professionally repaired.