Hondius' Map of Africa Filled with Decorative Elements
"Africae Nova Tabula", Hondius, Henricus
Period: 1631 (dated)
Color: Hand Color
19.6 x 14.8 inches
49.8 x 37.6 cm
This richly ornamented map of the continent is Henricus Hondius' issue of Jodocus Hondius' map, but without the decorative borders that were masked in order to fit the map into an atlas format. The geography is largely speculative and follows Blaeu's map of 1617 with the Cuama River originating in the mountains rather than in the Sachaf Lake below the Mountains of the Moon (Lunae Montes). The origin of the Nile conforms to the Ptolemaic tradition of the two twin lakes south of the equator. The Kingdom of Monomotapa occupies a large area of southern Africa. Ornamentation includes a wreath-style title cartouche, sailing ships, flying fish, various sea monsters, and Neptune consorting with a comely mermaid. Elephants, lions, zebras, ostriches, and even a dragon occupy the interior. This is the third state, from either Nouveau Theatre du Monde (1639-44) or Nouvel Atlas (1646-49) with French text on verso.
References: Betz #58.3; cf. Norwich #34; Van der Krogt #8600:1D.2.
Contemporary color with light scattered foxing. The centerfold has been reinforced with old paper on verso, closing a few splits.