THE FIRST STATE OF LE CLERC’S RARE 1602 WORLD MAP

 

$7,500

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AUTHOR:

LE CLERC, JEAN [HONDIUS]

TITLE:

Orbis Terrae Novissima Descriptio. Authore Gerardo Mercatore... I Hondius sculp. I le Clerc excu. 1602

CONDITION:

13” x 20”. Uncolored copperplate engraving. Some light offsetting, a small ink spot in the East Indies, and a few tiny wormholes. Very good condition.

DATE:

Paris, 1602

DESCRIPTION:

The first state, dated 1602, of a separately published world map engraved by Jodocus Hondius and published by the Parisian, Jean Le Clerc. “Copies with the original date of 1602 are rare” -- Shirley.

Based on Drake’s hypothesis, the map prophetically shows an insular Tierra del Fuego at the southern tip of South America 15 years before it was actually confirmed to be an island. Other maps of the period delineate it as the northern tip of an enormous southern continent. The Dutch controlled passage through the Straits of Magellan, and this insular shape is significant because it suggested to competitors that there was an alternate pathway to the Pacific - by rounding the Horn below the island. South America has also been corrected from the potato shape used by Mercator on his world maps.

REFERENCES:

Shirley, The Mapping of The World, #233.

Inventory No. 8552

Cohen & Taliaferro

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