Catalog Archive
Auction 179, Lot 739

Hondius' Map of China, Korea, and Japan in Full Contemporary Color

"China", Mercator/Hondius

Subject: China, Korea & Japan

Period: 1613 (circa)

Publication: Gerardi Mercatoris - Atlas sive Cosmographicae

Color: Hand Color

18.1 x 13.4 inches
46 x 34 cm
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Besides China, this map depicts Korea as an elongated island and Japan on the Ortelius-Teixeira model. The map contains rudimentary geographical information, as there was very little actually known of the region during the early part of the seventeenth century. The interior of China is dominated by several large lakes, and the mythical Chiamai Lacus forms the headwaters of five large rivers in northeastern India. The northwest coastline of America appears in the upper right corner with a notation that refers to the Tartar hordes that inhabit the region. The map is beautifully engraved with a moiré patterned sea and richly embellished with strapwork cartouches, a deer, a fox, a sea monster, a European and a Japanese ship, and a unique wind-powered wagon. In one cartouche, a scene depicts the Japanese persecution of a Christian missionary, probably a reference to the martyrdoms in Nagasaki in 1597. Latin text on verso, published between 1613-19.

References: Van der Krogt (Vol. I) #8410:1A.

Condition: B

A nice impression with full contemporary color on paper with a small coat of arms watermark. There is toning along the centerfold and in the blank margins, as well as a few tiny abrasions along the centerfold. There are professional repairs to some separations along the centerfold and to a few tiny tears along the edges of the sheet.

Estimate: $1,900 - $2,200

Sold for: $1,600

Closed on 9/16/2020