"Africa Elaboratissima", Schenk, Pieter
Period: 1705 (circa)
Publication: Atlas Contractus
Color: Hand Color
22.6 x 18.9 inches
57.4 x 48 cm
The bold title cartouche is the most intriguing aspect of this large map of the African continent. The title is engraved on a masonry plinth heaped with fruit & animals. An African mounted on an elaborately armored elephant, with panniers overflowing with trade goods, is accompanied by an armed Moor. Table Mountain is in the distant background. The map contains the customary 17th century interior cartography with an exaggerated outline with deeply scalloped bays. The Nile arises from Lakes Zaire and Zaflan in the Ptolemaic manner and the Congo River also originates in Lake Zaire. Schenk, in partnership with his brother-in-law Gerard Valk, purchased numerous plates from other prominent Dutch cartographers to supplement their own engravings. This map appears to be Schenk's original production as the design of the cartouche is completely unique. It appeared in Schenk’s Atlas Contractus between 1703 and 1709.
References: Betz, pp. 466-67; Norwich #63.
Bold original color with a few short cracks caused by the oxidation of the green pigment that have been closed on verso with archival materials. There is a tiny hole off the coast of Angola and a few minute worm holes only visible when held to light. Small tears in the blank margins, several of which enter 1" into the map, have been professionally repaired.