1778 Matthäus Lotter Large Oval World Map showing Capt Cooks 1st Voyage - Rare 1st edition

Cartographer : Tobias Conrad Lotter

  • Title : Mappe Monde ou carte generale de l`Univers sur une projection nouvelle d`une sphere ovale pour mieux entendre les distances entre l`Europe et Amerique avec le tour du monde du Lieut Cook et Tous Les Decouvertes Nouvelles...MDCCLXXVIII
  • Date : 1778
  • Condition: (A+) Fine Condition
  • Ref:  93515
  • Size:  39in x 21in (990mm x 535mm)
  • Price: $2499US

This very large, impressive original copper-plate engraved antique World Map, on an Ortelius Oval Projection, showing the tracks of Captain Cooks 1st Voyage to the South Seas, was engraved and published by Matthäus Albrecht Lotter in 1778, dated in title. The map was re-issued in 1782 & 1787 to include the tracks of Cooks 2nd & 3rd voyages of discovery.
This 1st edition Lotter Oval map is scarce with only a small few available on the open market.
This map was one of the first world maps published to cash in on the publicity over Captain James Cooks Circumnavigation of the world and the first European survey of New Zealand and the East Coast of Australia. Beautifully executed and dominated by New Holland, Australia, for the first time almost complete on a world map.

General Definitions:
Paper thickness and quality: - Heavy and stable
Paper color : - off white
Age of map color: - Original
Colors used: - Yellow, green, pink
General color appearance: - Authentic
Paper size: - 39in x 21in (990mm x 535mm)
Plate size: - 37 1/2in x 19 1/4in (955mm x 495mm)
Margins: - Min 1in (25mm)

Margins: - None
Plate area: - None
Verso: - None

This large world map was one of the first to show the discoveries of the east coast of Australia and New Zealand by James Cook on his first voyage of Discovery. The shadow line from Tasmania west to Western Australia was not filled in until the later discoveries of Bass Strait by Bass and Matthew Flinders in 1797 and the southern coast by Baudin and Flinders in 1803. Also included along the New Holland coastline is the earlier Dutch discoveries of Hartog 1616, the van Leeuwin 1619, Nuyts 1627, de Wit 1628 and Tasman 1642-44. The Trial Islands near present-day Dampier, named after the English ship the Trial, which were incorrectly charted by Gerritsz after the false reports provided by Captain Brookes, are also noted.

Cooks First Voyage (1768-1771)
The first voyage under Captain James Cooks command was primarily of a scientific nature. The expedition on HMS Endeavour initially sailed to Tahiti to observe the transit of the planet Venus in order to calculate the earths distance from the sun. Cook landed on the South Pacific island in April of 1769 and in June of that year the astronomical observations were successfully completed. In addition to these labors, very good relations with the Tahitians were maintained and the naturalists Joseph Banks and Daniel C. Solander conducted extensive ethnological and botanical research.
Another purpose of the voyage was to explore the South Seas to determine if an inhabitable continent existed in the mid-latitudes of the Southern Hemisphere. Upon leaving Tahiti, Cook named and charted the Society Islands and then continued southwest to New Zealand. His circumnavigation and exploration of that country also resulted in a detailed survey. Cook proceeded to Australia, where he charted the eastern coast for 2,000 miles, naming the area New South Wales. As a result of these surveys, both Australia and New Zealand were annexed by Great Britain. In addition to these explorations, the HMS Endeavour returned to England without a single death from scurvy among its men, an historic feat at the time. The combination of these accomplishments brought Cook prominence, promotion, and the opportunity to lead further expeditions.

The Ortelius Oval Projection is a map projection used for world maps largely in the late 16th and early 17th century. It is neither conformal nor equal-area but instead offers a compromise presentation. It is similar in structure to a pseudocylindrical projection but does not qualify as one because the meridians are not equally spaced along the parallels. The projection\'s first known use was by Battista Agnese (flourished 1535–1564) around 1540, although whether the construction method was truly identical to Ortelius\'s or not is unclear because of crude drafting and printing. The front hemisphere is identical to Petrus Apianus\'s 1524 globular projection.
The projection reached a wide audience via the popular map Typus Orbis Terrarum by Abraham Ortelius beginning in 1570. The projection (and indeed Ortelius maps) were widely copied by other mapmakers such as Giovanni Pietro Maffei, Fernando de Solis, and Matteo Ricci.