Catalog Archive
Auction 184, Lot 708

Coronelli's Decorative Two-Sheet Map of Africa

"[On 2 Sheets] L'Africa Divisa nelle sue Parti Secondo le Pui Moderne Relationi Colle Scoperte dell' Origine, e Corso del Nilo...", Coronelli, Vincenzo Maria

Subject: Africa

Period: 1691 (published)

Publication: Atlante Veneto…

Color: Hand Color

17.6 x 23.8 inches
44.7 x 60.5 cm
Download High Resolution Image
(or just click on image to launch the Zoom viewer)

This is the first state of this handsome two-sheet map making up the whole continent of Africa. The large double-sheet style is a signature of Coronelli's superb continental maps. This map is full of topographical features and place names, and is more accurate than many maps of the period. Coronelli based the map on his globe gores of 1688 and his terrestrial globe of 1683, which in turn were based on maps of Africa by Sanson (1668), Jaillot (1674), and Duval (1678). A large drape-style cartouche fills eastern Africa, and is surrounded by a river god and a crocodile to represent the Nile River, the angel of Fame, and a scribe kneeling on a terrestrial globe while writing upon the drape. The scribe's writing discusses the source of the Blue Nile in Abyssinia and mentions Ptolemy's belief that the source of the Nile was the Mountains of the Moon. The map is richly decorated with scores of animals and scenes of horsemen in combat or hunting the animals. The large title cartouche on the western sheet features indigenous animals including an ostrich, a crocodile, lions, an elephant, and a camel.

References: Betz #153; Norwich #56; Shirley (BL Atlases) T.CORO-7a #10-11.

Condition: A

Fine impressions on watermarked paper with old manuscript notations in corners of sheet, not affecting map. There are damp stains along edges of sheet at top left and bottom left, resulting in some chips, far from image. There is a faint blue shadow that appears along the centerfold that is caused by our scanner, and does not appear on the map.

Estimate: $2,750 - $3,500


Closed on 9/15/2021