1730 Seutter Map of Southeast England, the English Channel, London, and Normandy
Description: A highly decorative c. 1730 map of the english Channel, southeastern england, and the coasts of Normandy by Matthius Seutter. The map covers southeastern england, including London and the full length of the Thames River, from Gloucester and Salisbury to the Straits of Dover and from Oxfordshire to the Isle of Wight. The coasts of Normandy are covered from Calais to Havre De Grace. Seutter's map combines elements of both nautical charts and traditional maps, with depth soundings and shading to indicate undersea dangers throughout the english Channel, North Sea, and Straits of Dover. An elaborate allegorical title cartouche appears at bottom center. The cartouche features Greek deities including Poseidon and Hermes, as well as merchants, honey bees, and trade vessels.
This map first appeared in various Seutter composite atlases in the 1730s. The present example is exceptionally vivid, suggesting an early impression from the plate. The plate was subsequently updated and reused by Seutter's successor, Conrad Lotter, in the 1770s. Most latter impressions are extremely weak due to plate overuse.
Date: 1730 (undated)
Cartographer: Georg Matthaus Seutter (1647 - 1756) was one of the most important and prolific German map publishers of the 18th century. Seutter started his career as an apprentice brewer. Apparently uninspired by the beer business, Seutter abandoned his apprenticeship and moved to Nuremberg where he apprenticed as an engraver under the tutelage of the prominent J. B. Homann. Sometime in the early 1700s Seutter left Homann to establish his own independent cartographic publishing firm in Augsburg. Though he struggled in the early years of his independence, Seutter's engraving skill and commitment to diversified map production eventually attracted a substantial following. Most of Seutter's maps are heavily based upon, if not copies of, earlier work done by the Homann and De L'Isle firms. Nonetheless, by 1732 Seutter was one of the most prolific publishers of his time and was honored by the German Emperor Karl VI who gave him the title of "Imperial Geographer", after which most subsequent maps included the "Avec Privliedge" designation. Suetter continued to publish until his death, at the height of his career, in 1757. The Seutter firm sadly fell into the hands of Seutter's wastrel son Albrecht Carl Seutter who did little to advance the firm until in own death in 1762. Following Albrecht's death, the firm was divided between the established Probst firm and the emerging firm of Tobias Conrad Lotter. Lotter, Matthaus Seutter's son in law, was a master engraver and worked tirelessly on behalf of the Suetter firm. It is Lotter, who would eventually become one of the most prominent cartographers of his day, and his descendants, who are generally regarded as the true successors to Matthaus Seutter. (Ritter, M. Seutter, Probst and Lotter: An Eighteenth-Century Map Publishing House in Germany., "Imago Mundi", Vol. 53, (2001), pp. 130-135.) Click here for a list of rare maps from Georg Matthaus Seutter.
Size: Printed area measures 22.5 x 19 inches (57.15 x 48.26 centimeters)
Condition: Very good. Original centerfold. Margins narrow. Blank on verso.
Code: EnglandChannel-seutter-1730 (to order by phone call: 646-483-0487)