Catalog Archive
Auction 154, Lot 695

Pirated Edition of Jaillot's Two-Sheet Map of Africa

"L'Afrique Divisee Suivant l'Estendue de Ses Principales Parties ou sont Distingues les uns des Autres les Empires, Monarchies...", Sanson/Jaillot

Subject: Africa

Period: 1694 (dated)


Color: Black & White

34.1 x 21.4 inches
86.6 x 54.4 cm
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This striking map is a pirated edition of Jaillot's 1692 map of the continent of Africa. The map is completely re-engraved in a somewhat crude engraving style, with the date updated to 1694 both in the title above the map and in the distance scale cartouche. As the French dominated the map publishing business in the late 17th century, their work was widely copied, both with and without approval. Jaillot's map was based on Sanson's second map of Africa (1668), and this map presents the standard Ptolemaic description of the source of the Nile with Jaillot's updated depiction of the rivers south of these Ptolemaic lakes. The Zambeze River appears above the Zambere and Rio de Spiritu Santo, all of which flow into the Indian Ocean. A large section of South America is shown and two St. Helena islands appear - a common error in maps from this period. The large distance scale cartouche has six scales. The very large and decorative title cartouche includes a tumult of figures, cornucopias, elephant, crocodile, lion and ostrich under the coat of arms of the Dauphin.

There are several errors that indicate this edition was created by an Italian engraver, including the misspelling of LAFRIQVL at the end of the title above the map, and the misspelling of "pour" as por in the publisher's imprint within the distance scale cartouche. In The Mapping of North America II, Philip Burden describes and illustrates an anonymous Italian edition of Jaillot's map of North America (see Burden #619), and it is likely that the same engraver was responsible for this map of Africa as well. On four sheets joined as issued.

We have not been able to find any other examples of this pirated edition in institutions or dealer catalogs.

References: cf. Betz #156.

Condition: A

Overall clean and bright with a printer's crease at bottom right, minor creasing along the center joint, and two small spots at the center of the map. There are several chips and tears along the edges of the sheet that have been professionally repaired.

Estimate: $1,100 - $1,400

Sold for: $850

Closed on 9/16/2015