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Description:This large, handsome original hand coloured copper plate engraved antique map of Tartary including China, Japan, Central Asia, parts of the Mogul Empire, Persia and Siberia - was published by Fredrick De Wit in 1680.The map is finely engraved with detail, with fine original colour on sturdy, strong paper.
General Definitions:Paper thickness and quality: - Heavy and stablePaper color : - off whiteAge of map color: - EarlyColors used: - Yellow, orangeGeneral color appearance: - AuthenticPaper size: - 25in x 22 1/2in (635mm x 570mm)Plate size: - 22in x 17 1/2in (560mm x 445mm)Margins: - Min 1in (25mm)
Imperfections:Margins: - Light age toningPlate area: - Light age toningVerso: - Light age toning
Background:Although Arabia, Persia, the Silk road to China and those parts of Northern India conquered by Alexander the Great were known to the classical world, it was not until the year AD 1375 that a map giving some idea of the real shape and size of Asia was compiled. This was the famous Catalan Map, based on reports of Franciscan missionaries and the writings of Marco Polo. A century or so later in the first Ptolemaic Atlases, there were altogether twelve maps of Asia which, of course, revealed no more or less than Ptolemy's view of the Ancient world, but in the expanded Waldseemuller editions of 1513 and 1532 there were modern regional maps including much information from Marco Polo's travels.Later 16th century maps continue to show many of the distorted outlines copied from Ptolemy although by this time India, Ceylon and the Indies were gaining more recognizable shape. Munster was again the first publisher to print a separate map of Asia and later Ortelius issued the first separately printed map of China in 1584 and Japan in 1595. In the next century highly decorative maps were published by Van Den Keere in 1614, Speed 1627, Blaeu 1630, De Wit 1660, Visscher 1680 and others too numerous to list. (Ref: Tooley, M&B)