Blaeu's Stunning Carte-a-Figures Map of the Americas
"Americae Nova Tabula", Blaeu, Willem
Subject: Western Hemisphere - America
Period: 1643 (circa)
Publication: Theatre du Monde ou Nouvel Atlas
Color: Hand Color
22 x 16.3 inches
55.9 x 41.4 cm
This stunning carte-a-figures map is a superb example of the fine art of decorative cartography and a seventeenth-century European view of the New World. The coastal outlines generally follow Ortelius and Wytfliet with nomenclature from a variety of explorers and colonists. Panels at sides, each with five portraits of the native inhabitants, were taken from John White (Virginia), Hans Staden (Brazil) and other early explorer's accounts. Across the top are nine town plans including Havana, St. Domingo, Cartegena, Mexico City, Cusco, Potosi, I. la Mocha in Chile, Rio de Janeiro, and Olinda in Brazil. This is one of the few maps of the Americas by this famous Dutch cartographer. The map itself is similar to Blaeu's wall map of 1608 with the additional discoveries of Henry Hudson in North America, and Tierra del Fuego with Le Maire Strait. This is the fourth state of the plate with the imprint changed to Auct: Guiljelmo Blaeuw and some re-engraving of the sea surrounding the ships and sea monsters. French text on verso, published between 1643-50.
References: Burden #189; Goss (Blaeu) p. 156; Tooley (Amer) p. 297; Van der Krogt (Vol. II) #9000:2.
Full contemporary color with a few printer's creases along the upper centerfold and small separations in the top and bottom margins that have been reinforced with archival tape on verso. There is minor toning and a few spots of foxing.