1760 Seutter Map of Artesia (Artois), France

Artesia cum finitimis locis velut Sedes Ac Theatrum Belli : curiosis Spectatoribus ob oculos positum et ad normam Guilielmi de l'Isle celeberrimi Reg. Gal. Geogr. repraesentatum, excusum et venum expositum a Matthaæo Seutter, S.C.M.G. Augustæ Vindelic.

1760 Seutter Map of Artesia (Artois), France


Spectacular old color Seutter map of Artesia in northern France.

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Artesia cum finitimis locis velut Sedes Ac Theatrum Belli : curiosis Spectatoribus ob oculos positum et ad normam Guilielmi de l'Isle celeberrimi Reg. Gal. Geogr. repraesentatum, excusum et venum expositum a Matthaæo Seutter, S.C.M.G. Augustæ Vindelic.
  1760 (undated)    20 x 23 in (50.8 x 58.42 cm)     1 : 250000


This spectacular old color 1760 Matthäus Seutter map of Artois (Artesia) in northern France. The map covers a large portion of northern France and notes the cities of Dunkerque (Dunkerke), Ypres, Lille (Ryssel Lille), Lens (which is home to the newest branch of the Louvre museum), and Arras, to name a few. The map also labels the Pas de Calais. This map was published by Matthäus Seutter in Augsburg and derived from an earlier map by the French cartographer Guillaume de l'Isle.

Artois and the modern region of the Nord-Pas-de-Calais were the epicenter of many of the wars between the English and the French during the 17th century, although during this time warfare was not exclusively between the English and the French. Artois was conquered by France during the Thirty Years' War and French sovereignty over the region was established in 1659. The wars continued until the early 18th century. The fact that Artesia/Artois had been a theater of war is directly referenced in the map's title Sedes Ac Theatrum Belli, roughly translated from Latin, means 'seat of the theater of war.'


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.)

The De L'Isle family (fl. c. 1700 - c. 1760) (also written Delisle) were, in composite, a mapmaking tour de force who redefined early 18th century European cartography. Claude De L'Isle (1644 -1720), the family patriarch, was Paris based a historian and geographer under Nicholas Sanson. De L'Isle and his sons were proponents of the school of "positive geography" and were definitive figures, defining the heights of the Golden Age of French Cartography. Of his twelve sons, four, Guillaume (1675- 1726), Simon Claude (1675 - 1726), Joseph Nicholas (1688 - 1768) and Louis (1720 - 1745), made a significant contributions to cartography. Without a doubt Guillaume was the most remarkable member of the family. It is said that Guillaume's skill as a cartographer was so prodigious that he drew his first map at just nine years of age. He was tutored by J. D. Cassini in astronomy, science, mathematics and cartography. By applying these diverse disciplines to the vast stores of information provided by 18th century navigators, Guillaume created the technique that came to be known as "scientific cartography", essentially an extension of Sanson's "positive geography". This revolutionary approach transformed the field of cartography and created a more accurate picture of the world. Among Guillaume's many firsts are the first naming of Texas, the first correct map of the Mississippi, the final rejection of the insular California fallacy, and the first identification of the correct longitudes of America. Stylistically De L'Isle also initiated important changes to the medium, eschewing the flamboyant Dutch style of the previous century in favor of a highly detailed yet still decorative approach that yielded map both beautiful and informative. Guillaume was elected to the French Academie Royale des Sciences at 27. Later, in 1718, he was also appointed "Premier Geographe du Roi", an office created especially for him. De L'Isle personally financed the publication of most of his maps, hoping to make heavy royalties on their sales. Unfortunately he met an untimely death in 1728, leaving considerable debt and an impoverished child and widow. De L'Isle's publishing firm was taken over by his assistant, Phillipe Buache who became, posthumously, his son in law. The other De L'Isle brothers, Joseph Nicholas and Louis De L'Isle, were employed in the Service of Peter the Great of Russia as astronomers and surveyors. They are responsible for cataloguing and compiling the data obtained from Russian expeditions in the Pacific and along the northwest coast of America, including the seminal explorations of Vitus Bering and Aleksei Chirikov. The De L'Isles, like their rivals the Vaugondys , must be considered speculative geographers. Speculative geography was a genre of mapmaking that evolved in Europe, particularly Paris, in the middle to late 18th century. Cartographers in this genre would fill in unknown areas on their maps with speculations based upon their vast knowledge of cartography, personal geographical theories, and often dubious primary source material gathered by explorers and navigators. This approach, which attempted to use the known to validate the unknown, naturally engendered many rivalries. The era of speculatively cartography effectively ended with the late 18th century explorations of Captain Cook, Jean Francois de Galaup de La Perouse, and George Vancouver.


Bound into various composite atlases in the eighteenth century.    


Very good. Blank on verso.


OCLC 159821859.