Auction 162, Lot 411

"A Chart of the Straits of Magellan. Inlarged from the Chart Published at Madrid in 1769...", Jefferys/Sayer & Bennett

Subject: Strait of Magellan

Period: 1775 (dated)

Publication: The American Atlas

Color: Hand Color

26.9 x 20.3 inches
68.3 x 51.6 cm

Thomas Jefferys was one of the most important English map publishers of the 18th century. His work included prints and maps of locations around the world, but his most notable maps are of North America and the West Indies. He began his career in the map trade in the early 1730s, working as an engraver for a variety of London publishers, and eventually setting up his own shop. In 1746, he was appointed Geographer to the Prince of Wales, and in 1760 he became Geographer to the King. These titles granted access to manuscripts and cartographic information held by the government. In the early 1760s he embarked on an ambitious project to produce a series of English county maps based on new surveys, but ran out of money and filed for bankruptcy in 1766. He then partnered with London publisher Robert Sayer, who reissued many of Jefferys plates and continued to issue new editions after Jefferys' death in 1771. Jefferys' American Atlas and the accompanying West-India Atlas, published post posthumously, are considered his most important cartographic works.

This is one of the period's best charts of the important and treacherous Strait of Magellan based on Spanish sources. There is good navigational information through the strait, along with topographical detail along the coastlines. There are notations scattered throughout, including one explaining how Port Famine got its name. A "Vulcano cover'd with snow" is noted in Tierra del Fuego. A large inset map shows the area and its relation to the Falkland Islands. Thomas Jefferys compiled this map from the observations and surveys of Olmedilla, Byron, Wallis, Carteret and Bougainville. This example was published by Sayer & Bennett.


Condition: B+

Original outline color on paper with a large fleur-de-lis coat of arms watermark with the initials "LVG." There is light toning and offsetting with minor soiling.

Estimate: $400 - $475

Sold for: $275

Closed on 4/26/2017