C1627

Asia and the adjoining islands.

Mapmaker:

John Speed (1542 - 1629)

First state of this highly detailed and decorative carte-�-figures map of Asia by John Speed from A Prospect of the Most Famous Parts of the World, the first world atlas to be produced by an Englishman. The flourishing of English … Read Full Description

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S/N: GBEL-008–184247
(N)
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Details

Full Title:

Asia and the adjoining islands.

Date:

C1627

Mapmaker:

John Speed (1542 - 1629)

Condition:

In good condition, centre fold as issued.

Technique:

Copper engraving with original hand colouring.

Image Size: 

516mm 
x 395mm
AUTHENTICITY
Asia and the adjoining islands. - Antique Map from 1627

Genuine antique
dated:

1627

Description:

First state of this highly detailed and decorative carte-�-figures map of Asia by John Speed from A Prospect of the Most Famous Parts of the World, the first world atlas to be produced by an Englishman. The flourishing of English maritime voyages during the reign of Elizabeth I and the founding of the English East India Company in 1600 had been instigated by the publication of John Wolfe&#8217s English edition of Linschoten&#8217s Itinerario in 1598. The work provided detailed information on the Portuguese Empire in the East and led to a significant increase in overseas trade. This not only sparked popular interest in the far-flung reaches of the world, with particular attention paid to Asia and the East Indies, but also transformed the English countryside as travel between increasingly busy ports and inland towns became more frequent. John Speed capitalised on the changing face of England and the interest in the Orient with the publication of an up-to-date atlas of England in 1611 and a world atlas in 1627. The ornate and elegant script, fine engraving and high detail of his maps led to the immediate commercial success of his work and its continued popularity. This map was published by George Humble unaltered in either the first (1627) or second (1631-2) edition of Speed&#8217s Atlas, as designated by the inscription of &#8216G. Humble&#8217 in the lower right corner of the map. A number of further editions of the atlas were produced by various publishers up until 1676. Like the maps in Speed&#8217s Theatre of the Empire of Great Britaine, the plates for the world atlas were engraved in Amsterdam by prominent Dutch engravers like Abraham Goos before being taken to London for printing. The signature of Abraham Goos is included at the lower centre of this map. The geographical information for this map was based on Hondius&#8217s own carte-a-figures map of 1623 which had been in turn based on Blaeu&#8217s landmark figured map of 1617. Unlike the maps of Blaeu and Hondius which included two costumed figures in each frame, Speed includes only one figure, each depicting a native from Assyria, Arabia, Armenia, Sumatra, Burma, Java, Molucca, China, Moscow and Tartar. Along the top of the map are birds-eye views of eight important Asian cities, sourced from the works of Linschoten and Braun and Hogenburg. From left to right, the cities depicted are: Candy, Goa, Damascus, Jerusalem, Ormus, Bantam, Aden and Macao. In contrast to Blaeu&#8217s map of Asia, the ancient spice city of Calicut is not featured, a curious anomaly considering that the English arrived there in 1615, twelve years before the publication of Speed&#8217s atlas. References: Moreland pp.148-150, Quirino p.104, Suarez p.200, Sweet 30 p.22, ill.pp.22, Tibbetts 76.

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