Jacques Le Moyne de Morgues |
(c. 1533 – 1588)
Jacques Le Moyne de Morgues (c. 1533 - 1588) was a French Huguenot painter born in Dieppe, France in 1533. Little is known of Le Moyne's early life; however, as Dieppe was at the time a center for both painting and cartography, it might be assumed that Le Moyne trained in the city of his birth. It is likely that le Moyne was employed at the court of King Charles IX where he most likely first met the Huguenot Admiral Gaspard de Coligny. Coligny commissioned Le Moyne to accompany his expedition to colonize Florida, where he was to record and map as much of the New World as possible. Under the command of Jean Ribault and Rene Laudonniere from 1562 - 1564, Le Moyne created a series of illustrations and maps depicting indigenous plants, peoples of Florida. This important work, eventually published by Theodore de Bry, is considered to be among first European images of the North American mainland. His important map, Floridae Americase Provinicae is considered to be one of, if not the, most important map of Florida ever published. Nonetheless, contemporary scholars have put Le Moyne's work under intense scrutiny as no original examples of his work remain. Considering the fate of the disastrous Huguenot colony in Florida, it is understandable that little if any of Le Moyne's original work survived and, consequently, it is a safe bet that most of his work was reproduced from memory in London. More likely than not, inconsistencies between Le Moyne's representations of indigenous American peoples, flora and fauna, and actual fact can be attributed to lapses in memory. Following his return returned from the New World, Le Moyne settled in London where he became a prominent botanical illustrator, at times working with such notable personages as Sr. Walter Raleigh. His work expresses typical Calvinist attention to detail and absence of ornamentation. Le Moyne died in London in 1588 having never seen his own work published. It was not until after his death when Le Moyne's widow sold his papers to the Frankfurt publisher Theodore de Bry, that le Moyne's important illustrations of early Florida were finally published. Le Moyne's sole surviving watercolor is held in the collections of the New York Public Library. Click here for a list of rare maps by the Jacques Le Moyne de Morgues.
Rare maps by Jacques Le Moyne de Morgues currently for sale.
Rare maps by Jacques Le Moyne de Morgues in the Geographicus Antique Map Archive.