Nicolaas Visscher’s classic world map is derived from that published by Joan Blaeu in 21-sheets in 1648. It would be the forerunner for a number of Dutch decorative double hemisphere world maps. There are some subtle alterations of geography such as the flattening of the north coast of the island of California which is now entitled ‘Nova Albion’. The coastline to the north extends more than that of Blaeu to illustrate a strait leading towards Hudson Bay. Visscher employed the artist Nicolaes Berchem to design the border decorations, a feature that was to become so prominent on later world maps. They are drawn from the classics and include the rape of Persephone, Zeus carried across the heavens in a chariot drawn by eagles, Poseidon with his followers and Demeter receiving the fruits of the earth. Top and bottom are two further hemispheres of the poles, the lower one lacking any southern continent. The map can be found in several different Dutch composite atlases but was first published in the ‘Atlas Novus’ by Jan Jansson in 1658. Shirley lists derivatives by Van Loon, Stoopendaal, Robyn, Boormeester and a further map by Visscher himself. An extremely nice example heightened in gold. Provenance: private English collection since 1985. Shirley (1984) 406.