Catalog Archive
Auction 189, Lot 69

Rare Variant with Note About the Strait of Anian Connecting Hudson Bay and the Pacific

"Carte d'Amerique Dressee pour l'Usage du Roy...", Delisle/Covens & Mortier

Subject: Western Hemisphere - America

Period: 1739 (dated)


Color: Hand Color

23.7 x 18.9 inches
60.2 x 48 cm
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Guillaume Delisle's map of the Americas [1722] was one of the most popular maps of the 18th century with numerous editions published. Its various editions provide a great view of the evolving cartographic knowledge of the Americas throughout the eighteenth century. This is an interesting and rare variant between the fourth and fifth state described in Tooley, published in Amsterdam by Covens & Mortier with the addition of a Latin title at top: America Accurate in Imperia, Regna, Status & Populos Divisa... The detailed map of the Americas provides a great deal of information about the state of geographic knowledge in the New World in the early part of the century. In the fourth state as recorded in Tooley, the western coast of North America is blank above California. This example, however, includes a note in French text that reads, "La plupart placent ici le detroit d'Anian par le quel on pourroit passer de la Baye de Hudson dans la grande Mer du Sud" (Most place here the Strait of Anian, through which one could pass from Hudson's Bay into the great South Sea [Pacific Ocean]). French territory of Louisiane takes up the lion's share of North America at the expense of the British colonies. This political bias is due to Delisle's position as geographer to the King of France. South America is much better represented with good depiction of the river systems and locations of the Jesuit missions. According to Tooley, this 1739 issue is from a re-engraved plate which is basically unchanged from the 1722.

References: cf. Tooley (America) p. 13, #4, plt. 2.

Condition: A

A crisp impression and contemporary color on a sheet with a "C. & I. Honig" watermark. There is marginal toning and a short centerfold separation at bottom that just touches the neatline.

Estimate: $700 - $850

Sold for: $1,300

Closed on 9/14/2022