Catalog Archive
Auction 180, Lot 746

"Carta del Mar Pacifico del Nord che Comprende la Costa Nord-Est d'Asia e la Costa Nord Ouest d'America Riconosciute nel 1778, e 79, dal Cap. Cook...", Meares, John (Capt.)

Subject: North Pacific Ocean

Period: 1796 (dated)

Publication: Raccolta di Tutti Viaggi Fatti Intorno Al Mondo da Diverse Nazioni dell'Europa

Color: Hand Color

23 x 18.1 inches
58.4 x 46 cm

This is the scarce first Italian version of Meares’ great map of the North Pacific detailing the explorations of Captain Cook from 1778-79 and Captain John Meares from 1788-89. The map covers a good portion of the Asian and North American continents, but the primary focus is on the tracks of the various explorers through the Northwest, Alaska, Canada, Hawaii, and through the Pacific to the Philippines and Southeast Asia. Meares is one of the more colorful figures in the early European exploration of the Northwest coast and Alaska. He claimed many of the discoveries of others as his own and rekindled the idea of the Sea of the West and a Northwest Passage. His mythical inland sea appears stretching from the Strait of Juan de Fuca northwards to just north of the Queen Charlotte Islands. A note indicates that the American sloop Lady Washington captained by Robert Gray had explored this sea in 1789. This was a complete fabrication on the part of Meares; nevertheless it gave new credence to the idea and appears on several later maps as well. The map is by Antonio Zatta, who was granted the copyright to reproduce Meares' work by the Book Sellers and Printers Guild in 1793. Published in Berenger's Raccolta di Tutti Viaggi Fatti Intorno Al Mondo da Diverse Nazioni dell'Europa.

References: McGuirk #225.

Condition: B+

Issued folding on paper with an "AOC" watermark, now flattened, with light soiling and a few faint dampstains along the folds. There are some interesting manuscript notations along the west coast of North America.

Estimate: $375 - $450

Sold for: $275

Closed on 11/18/2020