1671 Jacob Van Meurs Rare Original Antique Map of America - Island of California

Cartographer :Jacob Van Meurs

  • Title : Novissima et Accuratissima Totius Americae Descriptio per Jacobum Meursium
  • Date : 1671
  • Size: 22in x 19in (560mm x 485mm)
  • Ref #:  61157
  • Condition: (A) Very Good Condition

Description: This uncommon and rare original antique map of America and the Pacific, including parts of New Zealand, was published in Amsterdam by Jacob Van Meurs in 1671 for the German edition of Arnold Montanus' ground breaking publication "America". (Ref: Burden, Tooley, Koeman)

General Description:
Paper thickness and quality: - Heavy and stable
Paper color: - off white
Age of map color: - Early
Colors used: - Green, red, orange, yellow, blue
General color appearance: - Authentic 
Paper size: - 22in x 19in (560mm x 485mm)
Plate size: - 21 3/4in x 17 1/2in (550mm x 445mm)
Margins: - Min 1/2in (12mm)

Margins: - Light soiling
Plate area: - Folds as issued, light separation along folds, no loss
Verso: - Professionally backed onto Japanese archival rice paper

Background: Unlike the Dutch edition of this map (by Van Schaegen) and English edition (by John Ogilby), which copied the De Wit / Visscher America map, Van Meurs creates a highly decorative new plate for the German edition of Montanus' America. The plate was later acquired by Pierre Vander Aa and re-issued bearing Vander Aa's name circa 1714.
 The map shows California as an Island on the first Sanson Projection, showing a single large Great Lake (open at the west), a curious north-easterly coastline north of the Island of California and a geographically misaligned South America, with tribal vignettes in Brazil and wild life in North America. The map predates La Salle's information on the interior of North America, but includes excellent detail on Canada and the East Coast of North America, noting the Dutch Possessions, the Iroquois regions, N. Anglia, New Amsterdam, the Cheaspeak, Plymouth, and many Indian Place names.
 Meurs's map is based upon Nicholas Visscher's map of 1658, in that it includes the coastline New Zealand and the early Sanson model for California, and only shows one of the Great Lakes, updated from Visscher's edition. Visscher in turn drew his information from Joan Blaeu's wall map of the World, published in 1648.
 The map is most notable for its elaborate allegorical cartouches. One of the most outstanding features of this map are the beautifully engraved decorative cartouches that include numerous vignettes of wildlife, American Indians, sailing ships and battles. The title is surrounded by Native Americans trading with Europeans and in the North Pacific is a lavish scene of Neptune and his consort in a chariot surrounded by his entourage and putti. The map was to be included in Montanus book of America and so has folds as issued. (Ref: Burden, Tooley, Koeman)