Blaeu's Carte-a-Figures Map of Africa in Full Original Color
"Africae Nova Descriptio", Blaeu, Willem
Period: 1643 (circa)
Publication: Novus Atlas
Color: Hand Color
21.8 x 16.1 inches
55.4 x 40.9 cm
This is one of the most decorative seventeenth century maps of the African continent and a superb example of the Dutch carte-a-figures style. The map is surrounded on three sides with vignettes of native peoples and nine principal cities. The Nile is shown according to Ptolemy with its sources arising in the lakes Zaire and Zaflan, the fictitious Lake Sachaf of Laurent Fries appears, as well as the R. de Spirito Santo. The map is further embellished with numerous ships, sea monsters (including a great seahorse), a compass rose and exotic animals wandering all over the continent. This is the third state of the map according to Betz. French text on verso, published between 1643-50.
References: Betz #57.3; Norwich #32; Van der Krogt (Vol. II) #8600:2.
Lovely full original color with small fold separations along the lower centerfold that have been professionally repaired on verso. A few minor chips confined to the blank margins have been replaced with old paper.