Catalog Archive
Auction 198, Lot 4

Blaeu's Magnificent Carte-a-Figures World Map in Full Contemporary Color

"Nova Totius Terrarum Orbis Geographica ac Hydrographica Tabula", Blaeu, Willem

Subject: World

Period: 1642 (circa)

Publication: Toonneel des Aerdrycks

Color: Hand Color

21.4 x 16.1 inches
54.4 x 40.9 cm
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A magnificent map featuring a carte-a-figures border with allegorical representations of the sun, the moon, the five known planets, the four elements and the four seasons. Along the bottom are vignettes showing the seven wonders of the world: the Hanging Gardens of Babylon; the Colossus straddling the harbor at Rhodes; the Pyramids; the Mausoleum of Halicarnassus in Bodrum, Turkey; the Temple of Diana; the Statue of Jupiter; and the lighthouse at Alexandria. Josua van Ende engraved this map, reducing it from Blaeu's 1605 wall map for inclusion in atlases.

Petrus Plancius' world map of 1592 was the main source of geographical information. The map is shown on Mercator's projection with a massive Southern Continent attached to New Guinea, with the coastal names of Beach and Psittacorum regio noted from Marco Polo's travel memoirs. North America has the westward bulge characteristic of the time, with the Strait of Anian noted. Korea is shown as an island and Japan is in a kite-like shape. The map itself is richly decorated with cartouches, sea battles, monsters and compass roses. Fourth state with Tierra del Fuego shown as an island and the date omitted from the lower cartouche on the right. Dutch text on verso, published between 1642-48.

References: Goss (Blaeu) #1; Shirley #255; Van der Krogt (Vol. II) #00001:2A.

Condition: B+

A sharp impression with superb, full contemporary color on a watermarked sheet. There is a light dampstain in the bottom left corner of the sheet, just entering the images of Babylon and Rhodes, and a line of soiling in the bottom right corner of the sheet that is barely visible within the image.

Estimate: $12,000 - $15,000

Sold for: $9,000

Closed on 6/19/2024