Auction 153, Lot 652

"Tartaria sive Magni Chami Imperium per Ioannem Blaeu Ao. M.DC.LXIII", Witsen, Nicolaas

Subject: Northern Asia

Period: 1705 (circa)

Publication: Noord en Oost Tartarye

Color: Hand Color

Size:
14.4 x 11.1 inches
36.6 x 28.2 cm

Nicolaas Witsen (1641-1717) was a Dutchman who was a cartographer, authority on shipbuilding, administrator of the VOC, and served as mayor of Amsterdam multiple times. Witsen traveled to Moscow in 1664-65, keeping a diary and collecting artifacts. He became fascinated about Russia and obtained all information available at the time on the subject, including maps, travelogues, manuscripts and objects. In 1692, Witsen published the most comprehensive and authoritative work on Russia and northern Asia, Noord en Oost Tartarye. A second expanded edition was published in 1705 with additional maps, and again reprinted in 1785. All editions are very rare.

This map depicts northern Asia based on Johannes Blaeu's map of the same title from 1663. This great map of Tartaria covers all of eastern Asia between the Caspian Sea and northern China and Manchuria. Being one of the most remote regions of Asia, it was among the last to be properly explored and mapped. This map combines the knowledge obtained by the English and Dutch explorers as far as the Ob River with the balance of the map based on the reports of Marco Polo and the Greek classics. The deserts are filled with a wild assortment of devils and dragons, being held at bay from China by the Great Wall.

References:

Condition: A

Excellent impression and color with a "Pro Propria" watermark and light printer's ink residue at top.

Estimate: $400 - $475

Sold for: $300

Closed on 5/20/2015

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