Clive A. Burden LTD. Rare Maps, Antique Atlases, Books and Decorative Prints

The Mapping of North America

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‘THE FOUNDATION OF EUROPEAN CARTOGRAPHY OF CHINA … The first European Atlas map of China and the first to properly apply the name China to the region as a whole’ (Barron in Chang). It was first published in the ‘Additamentum’ by Abraham Ortelius in 1584, a supplement to his famous atlas ‘Theatrum Orbis Terrarum’. The map is orientated with the west at the top with the Great Wall easily identified. For the first time the fifteen Provinces of China are depicted. Formosa is clearly identified however the town of Macao is incorrectly placed on the eastern shore of the mouth of the Pearl River. Both the Yellow River and the Yangtze are illustrated for the first time and there are five large internal lakes. Upper right is the ‘Destertum Dovisival’ or the Gobi desert. A portion of western Japan is illustrated with Honshu dissected as are the Philippine Islands, part of Borneo and South East Asia.

The map is decorated with four images of the famous wheeled sail carts and several Tartar ‘yurt’ encampments in the north. The text on the verso identifies 240 towns. It was by far the most accurate one of China and was widely used by cartographers. The Latin text on verso draws on the letters of the Jesuit Bernadino Escalante as published in Seville in 1577 and includes four transcriptions of Chinese characters. The cartography itself is drawn by Ludovicus Georgius, also called Luis Jorge de Barbuda (fl.1575-99). This is an example of the second state with the Philippines named. Caboara (2022) 1; Chang (2003) pp. 9 & 157, pl. 11; Karrow (1993) 1/152 p. 18; Nebenzahl (2004) 4.6; Van den Broecke, Ortelius Atlas Maps, 164.
ORTELIUS, Abraham

Chinae, olim Sinarum Regionis, nova descriptio. Auctore Ludovico Georgio

Antwerp, 1584-[1603]
365 x 470 mm., in recent wash colour, with Latin text, small mark in Japan otherwise in good condition.
Stock number: 8939
£ 4,950
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