Catalog Archive

Auction 156, Lot 449

One of the Finest and Most Important Maps of Ireland

"Irlandiae Accurata Descriptio, Auctore Baptista Boazio", Ortelius/Vrients

Subject: Ireland

Period: 1608 (circa)

Publication: Theatrum Orbis Terrarum

Color: Hand Color

22.6 x 17.3 inches
57.4 x 43.9 cm
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This beautiful map of Ireland with north oriented to the right is based on the large 1599 map by Baptista Boazio. It is divided into the four provinces of Ulster, Connaught, Leinster and Munster with counties delineated by dotted line. It is filled with pictorial depictions of the forests and topography and the location of cities, towns and major landowners. A table to the left deciphers the Irish names relating to geographical features and residents, noting that the presence of O before a name indicates Caput familiae, or the head of the family, and Mc before a name indicates a Territorium fillii Satrapae, a region dominated by one related family. The sea is teeming with sea monsters and a pair of elegantly engraved ships, one of them aflame. A man in a curragh waving a trident is shown in the upper right near the dedication cartouche, and three other elaborate strapwork cartouches further adorn the map.

This map was among the additions made by Vrients when he took over publication of the Theatrum after Ortelius' death. It was published in relatively few editions and is very uncommon. This is the second state, which contains a reference to St. Patrick at top right. Italian text on verso, published in 1608 and 1612.

References: Law, pp. 6-9; Potter pp. 96-97; Van den Broecke #23.2.

Condition: B+

This plate was always too large for the atlas in which it was bound, so most extant examples have margin defects. The margins on all sides of this map have been professionally and skillfully replaced with the leaf-casting method, with the neatline at right seamlessly replaced in facsimile. There are additional professional repairs to a centerfold separation at bottom, several small worm holes along the centerfold, and a 1/4" hole in the title cartouche between the "R" and "L" in "Irlandiae."

Estimate: $5,500 - $7,000


Closed on 2/17/2016