Catalog Archive
Auction 178, Lot 524

"[Lot of 2] Presbiteri Iohannis sive Abissinor Imperii Descriptio [and] Abissina and Nubia &c.",

Subject: Eastern Africa

Period: 1598-1709 (circa)



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A. Presbiteri Iohannis sive Abissinor Imperii Descriptio, by Ortelius/Marchetti, circa 1598, black & white (4.1 x 2.9"). Miniature map showing the domain of the legendary Christian king, Prester John. The map is dominated by the Nile River, which is shown emanating from twin lakes south of the equator. The map is handsomely embellished with two elephants and an oared ship firing towards the coast. On a sheet of Italian text measuring 5.6 x 7.7". Pietro Maria Marchetti produced the second pocket atlas based on Abraham Ortelius' folio Theatrum. It is often referred to as the plagiarized version of the Epitome. The copper plates are closely copied from those of Philip Galle's 1593 Italian edition. Reference: King (2nd ed.) pp. 78-79. Condition: Minor foxing along the sheet edges. (A)

B. Abissina and Nubia &c., by Herman Moll, circa 1709, hand color (7.6 x 6.8"). A small English map of northeastern Africa, including the Red Sea and a small portion of Arabia including Mecca. Depicts the Nile River originating from Tzana Lake along with numerous kingdoms, settlements, rivers, lakes, and topography. Moll notes that the letter "K" stands for kingdom, "P" for people, and a small building indicates "places belong to the Turks." Condition: Faint toning along the centerfold and minor soiling in the margins. (B+)



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Estimate: $140 - $170

Sold for: $160

Closed on 6/10/2020