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1646 Blaeu Map of Liguria or the Republic of Genoa, Italy

Liguria-blaeu-1646
$800.00
Liguria, ò Stato della Republica di Genova - Main View
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1646 Blaeu Map of Liguria or the Republic of Genoa, Italy

Liguria-blaeu-1646

Gorgeous old color 17th century map of Genoa and Liguria showing nearby Cinque Terre.

SOLD

Title


Liguria, ò Stato della Republica di Genova
  1646 (undated)     16 x 22 in (40.64 x 55.88 cm)     1: 610000

Description


This gorgeous 1646 Willaem Janszoon Blaeu map depicts the Mediterranean coast of France and Italy, or as it was known then Liguria or the Republic of Genova. It stretches from Nice (Nizza) to Genoa (Genoua) and the Cinque Terre. There is a large, decorative cartouche with a large allegorical representation of Genoa. There is a second decorative cartouche with a dedication to D. Petro Hasselaer to the right. The sea is filled with sailing ships, possibly representing the formidable size and strength of the Genovese navy. The coat of arms of the Republic of Genoa appears at the upper-left. The Republic of Genoa was an independent state from 1005 to 1797, when it was fell to the armies of Napoleon Bonaparte. Today, the Cinque Terre, five fishing villages along the coast, are a world heritage site and are world famous, bringing tourists from every part of the world to the Ligurian coast.

This map was issued for the 1646 Latin edition of Willaem Janszoon Blaeu's iconic Atlas Mayor.

Cartographer


Willem Janszoon Blaeu (1571 - October 18, 1638), also known as Guillaume Blaeu and Guiljelmus Janssonius Caesius, was a Dutch cartographer, globemaker, and astronomer active in Amsterdam during the late 16th and early 17th centuries. Blaeu was born 'Willem Janszoon' in Alkmaar, North Holland to a prosperous herring packing and trading family of Dutch Reformist faith. As a young man, he was sent to Amsterdam to apprentice in the family business, but he found the herring trade dull and instead worked for his cousin 'Hooft' as a carpenter and clerk. In 1595, he traveled to the small Swedish island of Hven to study astronomy under the Danish Enlightenment polymath Tycho Brahe. For six months he studied astronomy, cartography, instrument making, globe making, and geodesy. He returned to Alkmaar in 1596 to marry and for the birth of his first son, Johannes (Joan) Blaeu (1596 – 1673). Shortly thereafter, in 1598 or 1599, he relocated his family to Amsterdam where he founded the a firm as globe and instrument makers. Many of his earliest imprints, from roughly form 1599 - 1633, bear the imprint 'Guiljelmus Janssonius Caesius' or simply 'G: Jansonius'. In 1613, Johannes Janssonius, also a mapmaker, married Elizabeth Hondius, the daughter of Willem's primary competitor Jodocus Hondius the Elder, and moved to the same neighborhood. This led to considerable confusion and may have spurred Willam Janszoon to adopt the 'Blaeu' patronym. All maps after 1633 bear the Guiljelmus Blaeu imprint. Around this time, he also began issuing separate issue nautical charts and wall maps – which as we see from Vermeer's paintings were popular with Dutch merchants as decorative items – and invented the Dutch Printing Press. As a non-Calvinist Blaeu was a persona non grata to the ruling elite and so he partnered with Hessel Gerritsz to develop his business. In 1619, Blaeu arranged for Gerritsz to be appointed official cartographer to the VOC, an extremely lucrative position that that, in the slightly more liberal environment of the 1630s, he managed to see passed to his eldest son, Johannes. In 1633, he was also appointed official cartographer of the Dutch Republic. Blaeu's most significant work is his 1635 publication of the Theatrum orbis terrarum, sive, Atlas Novus, one of the greatest atlases of all time. He died three years later, in 1638, passing the Blaeu firm on to his two sons, Cornelius (1616 - 1648) and Johannes Blaeu (September 23, 1596 - December 21, 1673). Under his sons, the firm continued to prosper until the 1672 Great Fire of Amsterdam destroyed their offices and most of their printing plates. Willem's most enduring legacy was most likely the VOC contract, which ultimately passed to Johannes' son, Johannes II, who held the position until 1617. As a hobbyist astronomer, Blaeu discovered the star now known as P. Cygni. Learn More...

Source


Blaeu, W., Atlas Major, (Amsterdam) Latin Edition, 1646.     In 1662 Joan Blaeu published his masterwork, which has been described as 'the greatest and finest atlas ever published' (Verwey, 1952): his monumental, eleven-volume Atlas Maior. This contained nearly six hundred maps, more than two hundred in excess of the Blaeus' mainstay the Atlas Novus. The former work already being renowned for the quality and beauty of its maps, Blaeu not only would add copious material but would improve the sophistication of his work: many of the newly-added maps utilized larger-sized presses and sheets, and the artistry applied to the engravings was often far superior to that of the earlier maps in the atlas - many of which by now were thirty, and some more than fifty years old. Blaeu's Atlas Maior was published from 1662 to 1672, consisting of some 594 maps compiled into upwards of 9 volumes with some editions containing as many as 12 volumes. This triumphant work's publishing life was cut violently short when, in 1672, the Blaeu's mammoth workshop was destroyed by fire; surviving stock would be sold at auction between 1674 and 1677, occasionally appearing under the imprint of later Dutch printers such as Pieter Schenk and Pieter Mortier. The maps added to the Atlas Maior, owing to their tragically short publishing life, are among the hardest-to-find of the Blaeu maps.

Condition


Very good. Latin text on verso. Very minor archival repair to outer margin. Margins are extremely large, often several inches. Does not effect printed image.

References


OCLC 551940450. Van der Krogt, P., Koeman's Atlantes Neerlandici, 7080:1B. Blaeu, Joan, Atlas Maior>, Taschen.