1692 Coronelli Map of Corsica

Isola di Corsica. - Main View

1692 Coronelli Map of Corsica


The grandest 17th century map of Corsica.


Isola di Corsica.
  1692 (undated)     23.5 x 18 in (59.69 x 45.72 cm)     1 : 400000


This is a superb example of Vincenzo Coronelli's 1692 map of Corsica, one of the most beautifully engraved large-scale depictions of the island.
A Closer Look
Corsica's rugged topography is illustrated pictorially, including both mountains and wooded regions. Cities and towns are marked and named, and the island's rivers and inlets are detailed. The outline of Coronelli's Corsica is related to that of the 1658 map of Nicolas Sanson, and Joan Blaeu's 1662 map, but its detail is superior to either of those precursors. As Coronelli's work advances on those earlier maps, it may point to access to Sanson's source material - which Coronelli's connections with the French geographical establishment may have afforded him.
A Superb Engraving
The map is presented in Coronelli's inimitable style: its bold, clear line and lettering are very typical of the Venetian master's work. The upper corners are embellished with elegant, floral cartouches presenting an elaborate dedication to Cardinal Gaspare Carpegna. The lower corners are adorned by the 'Moor's Head' arms of Corsica and the Genoese Cross.
Publication History and Census
This map was engraved for inclusion in Coronelli's 1692 Corso Geografico Universale and his Isolario. Only four examples of the separate map are listed in OCLC, although the map has appeared on the market from time to time.


Vincenzo Maria Coronelli (August 16, 1650 - December 9, 1718) was an important 17th century cartographer and globe maker based in Venice. Coronelli was born the fifth child of a Venetian tailor. Unlikely to inherit his father's business, he instead apprenticed in Ravenna to a woodcut artist. Around 1663, Coronelli joined the Franciscan Order and in 1671, entered the Venetian convent of Saint Maria Gloriosa dei Frari. Coronelli excelled in the fields of cosmography, mathematics, and geography. Although his works include the phenomenal Atlante Veneto and Corso Geografico, Coronelli is best known for his globes. In 1678 Coronelli was commissioned to make his first major globes by Ranuccio II Farnese, Duke of Parma. Each superbly engraved globe was five feet in diameter. Louis IV of France, having heard of the magnificent Parma globes, invited Coronelli to Paris where he constructed an even more impressive pair of gigantic globes measuring over 12 feet in diameter and weighing 2 tons each. Coronelli returned to Venice and continued to published globes, maps, and atlases which were admired all over Europe for their beauty, accuracy, and detail. He had a particular fascination for the Great Lakes region and his early maps of this area were unsurpassed in accuracy for nearly 100 years after their initial publication. He is also well known for his groundbreaking publication of the first accurate map depicting the sources of the Blue Nile. At the height of his career, Coronelli founded the world's first geographical society, the Accademia Cosmografica degli Argonauti and was awarded the official title Cosmographer of the Republic of Venice. In 1699, in recognition of his extraordinary accomplishment and scholarship, Coronelli was also appointed Father General of the Franciscan Order. The great cartographer and globe maker died in Venice at the age of 68. His extraordinary globes can be seen today at the Bibliothèque Nationale François Mitterrand in Paris, Biblioteca Marciana in Venice, in the National Library of Austria and in the Globe Museum in Vienna, in the library of Stift Melk, in the Special Collections Library of Texas Tech University, as well as lesser works in Trier, Prague, London, and Washington D.C. Coronelli's work is notable for its distinctive style, which is characterized by high quality white paper, dark intense impressions, detailed renderings of topographical features in profile, and numerous cartographic innovations. More by this mapmaker...


Coronelli, V., Corso geografico universale (Venice) 1692.     The Corso Geografico Universale was a Venetian cosmographic atlas issued by the Jesuit Minorite friar, geographer, and globe maker Vincenzo Maria Coronelli. The Corso Geografico is generally dated to 1692 and is considered a follow-up to the Atlante Veneto. There is no confirmed collation of the atlas, as all editions were assembled ad-hoc. Also maps for the atlas were also sold separately, and to subscribers the rate of six cards a month for two years. The maps of the Corso Geografico are generally unique works of great historical value. They are also masterpieces of craftsmanship, engraved between 1688 and 1692 in the well-equipped cartographic workshop of the Saint Maria Gloriosa dei Frari Convent. Editions of the Corso Geografico can roughly be broken up as 68 maps 1689-92; 173 maps, 1692; 260 maps, 1694-97).


Excellent condition. Few printers' creases, else fine.


OCLC 494656019.