Catalog Archive
Auction 174, Lot 88

One of the Most Important Maps Perpetuating the Myth of the Island of California

"America Septentrionalis", Hondius/Jansson

Subject: Colonial North America

Period: 1647 (published)

Publication: Atlas Novus

Color: Hand Color

21.8 x 18.3 inches
55.4 x 46.5 cm
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Due to its wide distribution by one of the preeminent Dutch mapmakers, this important map of North America had great influence in perpetuating the theory of California as an island. The map is a careful compilation of various sources and represents the state of cartographic knowledge at the time. The insular California is derived directly from Henry Briggs, as is the depiction of the Arctic. A great number of place names are revealed on California, including po. de S. Diego (San Diego) and Po. Sir Francisco Draco (San Francisco). The Rio del Norto (Rio Grande) originates in a large western lake and flows incorrectly into the Mare Vermio (Gulf of California). The cartography of the Gulf of Mexico and Florida is based on Hessel Gerritsz. On the east coast the region identified as Novum Belgium is greatly elongated; Iames Towne and a few place names from John Smith's map appear in Nova Anglia. There is a single Lac des Iroquois in the Great Lakes region. The map is richly embellished with a variety of animals throughout the interior. The oceans are teeming with ships and sea monsters. The title cartouche features several Native Americans and two comely mermaids flank the imprint cartouche. This is the second state with Jansson's imprint. Latin text on verso.

References: Burden #245; Goss (NA) #30; McLaughlin #6; Tooley (Amer) #6, pl. 28; Van der Krogt (Vol. I) #9100:1.2.

Condition: B

Full contemporary color that has been partially refreshed, with toning and soiling. There are some cracks that have been archivally repaired on verso. This map will ship flat.

Estimate: $1,600 - $1,900

Sold for: $2,750

Closed on 9/11/2019