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

Liguria, ò Stato della Republica di Genova

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


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

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


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.


The Blaeu Family (fl. 1596 - 1672). The Amsterdam based Blaeu clan represents the single most important family in the history of cartography. The firm was founded in 1596 by Willem Janzoon Blaeu (1571-1638). It was in this initial period, from 1596 to 1672, under the leadership of the Willem Blaeu and with this assistance of his two talented sons Cornelius (1616-1648) and Johannis (1596-1673), that the firm was most active. Their greatest cartographic achievement was the publication of the magnificent multi-volume Atlas Major. To this day, the Atlas Major represents one of the finest moments in cartography. The vast scope, staggering attention to detail, historical importance, and unparalleled beauty of this great work redefined the field of cartography in ways that have endured well into to the modern era. The cartographic works of the Blaeu firm are the crowning glory of the Dutch Golden Age of Cartography. The firm shut down in 1672 when their offices were destroyed during the Great Amsterdam Fire. The fire also destroyed nearly all of Blaeu's original printing plates and records, an incomparable loss to the history of cartography.


Blaeu, W., Atlas Major, (Amsterdam) Latin Edition, 1646.     The Theatrum Orbis Terrarum, sive, Atlas Novus, also published as the Atlas Major was first issued by Willem Jansz Blaeu and his son Joan Blaeu in 1635. The first edition contained about 207 seminal maps that ushered in a new golden age of Dutch cartography and established the distinctive flourishing highly decorative baroque Blaeu style. Most of the maps in this edition were closely based upon the earlier well established work of Jodocus Hondius, whose' map plates he had earlier acquired. The atlas continued to be published and republished in expanded and revised editions, reflecting the most up to date cartographic conventions and data derived from Dutch navigators and merchants then plying their trade throughout the world. Willem Blaeu died in 1638 and his son, Joan (Johannes), called teh Altas Major took over subsequent publications of the atlas. The final edition of the atlas, published from 1662 to 1672, consisted some 594 maps compiled into upwards of 9 volumes with some editions containing as many as 12 volumes. In 1672 a tragic fire destroyed the sprawling Blaeu workshop, then the largest cartographic publishing house in the world. Countless map plates were lost and the following the fire the Blaeu firm ceased production.


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.


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