The Countries of The Ancient World Exhibiting the Probable Settlement of the Descendants of Noah.
8.5 x 10.5 in (21.59 x 26.67 cm)
1 : 40000000
This is a scarce 1835 map by the important American mapmaker T. G. Bradford depicting the Ancient World and the probable settlements of the descendants of Noah. It shows the Ancient World from the Atlantic Ocean to the western parts of India and from Norway south past Arabia to the horn of Africa. The map is color coded according to the settlements of the three sons of Noah – Japhet, Ham and Shem. Ancient and modern place names are noted, along with rivers, mountains and other topographical features.
According to the Hebrew Bible, all the people on Earth are descendants from Noah's family, the only family to have survived the flood. According to the Book of Genesis, the three sons of Noah formed the three major races, each corresponding to the three classical continents - Japhet and his descendants formed the Japhetic Race (northern people) of Eurasia, Shem and his descendants formed the Semitic Race (middle people) of Asia while Ham and his descendants formed the Hamitic Race (southern people) of Africa. This map further notes the regions founded by their descendants viz. Ashur, son of Shem founded the Kingdom of Assyria, Javan, son of Japhet was the father of the Ionians and so forth. An inset in the lower left quadrant features the eastern portions of Asia and modern day Alaska.
The map was published as plate no. 179 in Thomas G. Bradford's 1835 Comprehensive Atlas Geographical, Historical and Commercial. Bradford's atlas, published in 1835 was an important work on many levels. First, it was one of the first American atlases to follow an encyclopedic format, offering readers extensive geographical and statistical tables to supplement the maps themselves. Second, it was published in Boston and influenced the city's rise as a publishing center later in the 19th century (at the time most publishing in the United States was restricted to New York and Philadelphia). Third, this atlas was the first to contain a separate and specific map showing the Republic of Texas. Fourth and finally, Bradford's atlas in some instances broke the Euro-centric mold regarding atlas production. Among other things, Bradford focused his atlas on the Americas and abandoned the classical decoration common in European atlases in favor of a more informational and inherently American approach.
Bradford published this atlas in several editions and with various partners. The first edition was published by William D. Ticktor and did not contain the iconic Republic of Texas map (although we have in fact seen Ticktor examples with a Texas map, suggesting, against conventional wisdom, that there may have been two Ticktor editions). The second official edition, published in the same year by the American Stationers Company, was the first to contain the Republic of Texas map, which is based on Austin's map, with two pages of descriptive text. A third edition was issued in 1836, also by American Stationers (though still dated 1835), and contained an unaltered Republic of Texas map with only a single page of descriptive text. A fourth edition appeared later, possibly 1837, and included an updated and revised map of Texas that replaces the old Mexican land grants with new inchoate counties. The maps from this atlas are an important addition to any collection focusing on early American cartography and Republic of Texas cartography.
All maps in this atlas, though not specifically noted as such, were most likely engraved by G. W. Boynton of Boston, who also engraved most of the maps for Bradford's later publication.
Thomas Gamaliel Bradford (1802 - 1887) was born in Boston, Massachusetts, where he worked as an assistant editor for the Encyclopedia Americana. Bradford's first major cartographic work was his revision and subsequent republishing of an important French geography by Adrian Balbi, Abrege de Geographie published in America as Atlas Designed to Illustrate the Abridgment of Universal Geography, Modern and Ancient. Afterwards Bradford revised and expanded this work into his own important contributions to American cartography, the 1838 An Illustrated Atlas Geographical, Statistical and Historical of the United States and Adjacent Countries. Bradford's cartographic work is significant as among the first to record Texas as an independent nation. In his long career as a map publisher Bradford worked with William Davis Ticknor of Boston, Freeman Hunt of New York, Charles De Silver of Philadelphia, John Hinton, George Washington Boynton, and others. We have been able to discover little of Bradford's personal life.
George Washington Boynton (fl. c. 1830 - 1850) was a Boston based cartographer and map engraver active in the first half of the 19th century. Boynton engraved and compiled maps for numerous publishers including Thomas Bradford, Nathaniel Dearborn, Daniel Adams, and S. G. Goodrich. His most significant work is most likely his engraving of various maps for Bradford's National Atlas. He also engraved for the Boston Almanac. In 1835 Boynton is listed as an employee of the Boston Bewick Company, an engraving, stereotype, and printing concern based at no. 47 Court Street, Boston. Little else is known of his life.
Bradford, T. G., A Comprehensive Atlas Geographical, Historical and Commercial (Boston), 1835.
Very good. Original platemark visible. Minor spotting at places. Blank on verso.
Rumsey 2643.188 (1838 edition).