Carte de la Nouvelle Zeelande.

Scarce map of New Zealand, based on the first printed chart of New Zealand by James Cook, with insets of Cook’s Strait and Thames River and Mercury Bay. One of only a handful of c.18th charts of New Zealand. Cook … Read Full Description


S/N: AENC-133-PI-NZ-CL–227042
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Full Title:

Carte de la Nouvelle Zeelande.




In good condition, with centre fold as issued.


Hand coloured copper engraving.

Image Size: 

x 345mm

Paper Size: 

x 390mm
Carte de la Nouvelle Zeelande. - Antique Map from 1788

Genuine antique



Scarce map of New Zealand, based on the first printed chart of New Zealand by James Cook, with insets of Cook’s Strait and Thames River and Mercury Bay. One of only a handful of c.18th charts of New Zealand.

Cook had been chosen to lead an expedition to the South Seas, ostensibly to observe the transit of Venus, but just prior to his departure he was given further secret instructions (dated 30 July 1768) which revealed the Admiralty’s true intent for the voyage.

‘You are to proceed to the Southward in order to make discovery of the Continent above mentioned until you arrive in the Latitude of 40°, unless you sooner fall in with it. But not having discover’d it or any Evident sign of it in that Run you are to proceed in search of it to the Westward between the Latitude before mentioned and the Latitude of 35° until’ you discover it, or fall in with the Eastern side of the Land discover’d by Tasman and now called New Zealand.’ Secret Instructions to Captain Cook, Page 1, 30th July, 1768.

Following those instructions, Cook sailed to the portion of the west coast of New Zealand that Abel Tasman had discovered in December 1742. In the following six months, between 3 October 1769 and 31 March 1770, he sailed over 2,400 miles, surveying the coast from on board the ship or else ashore. 

‘The Chart which I have drawn will best point out the figure and extent of these Islands, the situation of the Bays and harbours they contain and the lesser Islands lay about them. And now I have mentioned the Chart I shall point out such places as are drawn with sufficient accuracy to be depended upon and such as are not, beginning at Cape Palliser and proceed round Aehei no mouwe [North Island] by the East Cape &ca. The Coast between these two Capes I believe to be laid down pretty accurate both in its figure and the Course and distance from point to point. The oppertunities I had and the methods I made use on to obtain these requesites were such as could hardly admit of an error; from the East Cape to Cape Maria Vandiemen altho it cannot be perfectly true yet it is without any very material error, some few places however must be expected and these are very doubtfull and are not only here but in every other part of the chart pointed out by a prick’d or broken line. …’ Cook, Journals I, 275-6 

References: Andrew 1.165A, ill. p.162, Tooley 322,

National Library Australia: Bib ID 2100829

From Bonne’s, Atlas Encyclopedique, Contenant La Geographie Ancienne, et Quelques Cartes sur La Geographie du Moyen Age, La Geographie Moderne, et les Cartes Relatives a la Geographie Physique.

Rigorbet Bonne (1727 - 1794)

Bonne was an important French cartographer active in the later part of the C18th. In 1773 Bonne succeeded Jacques Nicolas Bellin as Royal Cartographer to France in the office of the Hydrographer at the Depôt de la Marine. Working in his official capacity, Bonne compiled some of the most detailed and accurate maps of the period. Bonne’s work represents an important step in the evolution of the cartographic ideology away from the decorative work of the 17th and early 18th century towards a more detail oriented and practical aesthetic.

View other items by Rigorbet Bonne

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