1755 Kitchin Four Panel Map of Europe

A Correct Map of Europe Divided into its Empires Kingdoms & c.

1755 Kitchin Four Panel Map of Europe


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A Correct Map of Europe Divided into its Empires Kingdoms & c.
  1755 (undated)    28.5 x 32 in (72.39 x 81.28 cm)


A curious and uncommon three panel 1755 wall map of europe by the english publisher M. Postlethwayte. Postlethwayte commissioned the well-known engraver Thomas Kitchen to compile this map based upon earlier maps by Vaugondy, d'Anville, and others. A decorative title cartouche in the upper right quadrant of Plate 1 features various nautical elements against a baroque monument bearing the map's title.

The present example is on four panels. Unlike most other maps from Postlethwayte's Dictionary each panel of this map is set into its own borders and was not intended to be joined. each panel measures 14.25 inches high and 16 inches wide. Thomas Kitchen prepared this map publication in Postlethwayte's 1755 edition of the Dictionary of Commerce.


Malachy Postlethwayt (c. 1707 - 1767) was a British economist and commercial expert famous for his publication of the commercial dictionary titled The Universal Dictionary of Trade and Commerce in 1751. The dictionary was a translation and adaptation of the Dictionnaire économique of the French Inspector General of the Manufactures for the King, Jacques Savary des Brûlons. Malachy claims to have spent nearly 20 years adapting and researching his important dictionary, which attained a popular following. The second edition of the Dictionary issued in 1752, was updated with a series of fine maps based upon D'Anville's work, but updated by Postlethwayt to reflect his political and social views. Politically Postlethwayt was extremely conservative and highly patriotic though his views more often than not took the form of rants against the social and political enemies of the British Empire. In the mid-1740s Postlethwayt lobbied for the Royal Africa Company and was known for his pro-slavery advocacy. His belief that the slave trade had a place in the larger "political arithmetic" of empire, promoted through his many popular books and other publications, in time became the party line for the ruling class. Despite his misguided feelings about the Africa slave trade, Postlethwayt was an influential and thoughtful economist whose ideas influenced Adam Smith, Samuel von Pufendorf, Alexander Hamilton, and others. Postlethwayt also commonly spelled his name as Postlethawyte and Postlethwait.

Thomas Kitchin (1718 - 1784) was a London based cartographic engraver and publisher. Kitchin was a very active engraver who produced a large corpus of work both in and out of the cartographic arena. He is responsible for numerous maps published in the London Magazine, and is known to have partnered, at various times, with Thomas Jefferys, Emmanuel Bowen and Laurie and Whittle. Many of Kitchin's maps continued to be updated and published well after his death in 1784.


Postlethwayte, M., Mr. Postlethwayt's Universal Dictionary of Commerce, Vol. II, (London), 1755.    


Very good. Original fold lines visible. Blank on verso. Paper shows slight warping due to age. Set of four maps. Each map contains center joint. Minor offsetting.