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1757 Vaugondy Map of the Southern Champagne Region of France

Partie Meridionale du Gouvernemt. General de Champagne qui comprend la Champagne propre, le Vallage, le Bassigny, le Senonois, et une partie de la Brie et du Perthois. - Main View

1757 Vaugondy Map of the Southern Champagne Region of France


Home of the fine Champagne wines.


Partie Meridionale du Gouvernemt. General de Champagne qui comprend la Champagne propre, le Vallage, le Bassigny, le Senonois, et une partie de la Brie et du Perthois.
  1752 (dated)     20 x 26 in (50.8 x 66.04 cm)     1 : 319000


This is a beautiful 1752 map of the southern Champagne region of France by Robert de Vaugondy. It covers part of the Champagne-Ardenne and Burgundy regions of northern France from Bar-le-Duc south to Montbard and from Saint-Fargeau east as far as Neufchateau, and includes the whole or parts of the modern day departments of Aube, Marne, Haute-Marne, Cote-d'Or and Yonne. The map rendered the entire region in extraordinary detail showing roads, canals, rivers, cities, villages, chateaux, etc.

The Champagne region is famous around the world for its spectacular sparkling wines of the same name. The map is centered on the department of Aube. The regions of Aube and Yonne are known for their production of Chaource cheese. Chaource is a cow's milk cheese, cylindrical in shape. The central pate is soft, creamy in color, and slightly crumbly, and is surrounded by a white penicillium candidum rind. The Haute Marne region is known for a variety of wines from the Coiffy-le-Haut vineyard, champagne from Rizaucourt-Argentolles, and the local favorite, 'Choue' beer. It is also famous for its production of Langres, a salty cheese with a pronounced odor.

In the top left quadrant the region if Brie is noted. Part of the Seine-et-Marne department, this region produces a wide variety of wines and hosts an annual wine and cheese fair. This area is known for its production of a brie-style cheese called 'Fromage de Meaux.' Over 25 liters of milk are used produce just one wheel of this raw-milk cheese. When ripe, its rind breaks at the slightest touch, allowing the beautiful, hay-colored, almost liquid paste to ooze out. The map also includes part of the Cote-d'Or, a premier wine-growing region of France. It produces what are arguably the world's finest, and most expensive Pinot noir and Chardonnay wines.

Historically the province of Champagne was bounded on the north by the bishopric of Liege and by Luxembourg, on the east by Lorraine, on the south by Burgundy, and on the west by Ilele-de-France, and by Picardy. Along with the other original French provinces, Champagne was abolished as a separate entity in 1790.

A fabulous decorative piece for perfect for wine store, Champagne wine cellars, and French restaurants. A beautifully engraved title cartouche adorns the bottom left quadrant of the map. Drawn by Robert de Vaugondy in 1752 and published in the 1757 issue of his Atlas Universal. The Atlas Universal was one of the first atlases based upon actual surveys. Therefore, this map is highly accurate (for the period) and has most contemporary town names correct, though historic names are, in many cases, incorrect or omitted.


Gilles (1688 - 1766) and Didier (c. 1723 - 1786) Robert de Vaugondy were map publishers, engravers, and cartographers active in Paris during the mid-18th century. The father and son team were the inheritors to the important Sanson cartographic firm whose stock supplied much of their initial material. Graduating from Sanson's map's Gilles, and more particularly Didier, began to produce their own substantial corpus of work. Vaugondys were well respected for the detail and accuracy of their maps in which they made excellent use of the considerable resources available in 18th century Paris to produce the most accurate and fantasy-free maps possible. The Vaugondys compiled each map based upon their own superior geographic knowledge, scholarly research, the journals of contemporary explorers and missionaries, and direct astronomical observation - moreover, unlike many cartographers of this period, they commonly took pains to reference their source material. Nevertheless, even in 18th century Paris geographical knowledge was severely limited - especially regarding those unexplored portions of the world, including the poles, the Pacific northwest of America, and the interior of Africa and South America. In these areas the Vaugondys, like their rivals De L'Isle and Buache, 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. Vaugondy's feuds with other cartographers, most specifically Phillipe Buache, resulted in numerous conflicting papers being presented before the Academie des Sciences, of which both were members. 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. After Didier died, his maps were acquired by Jean-Baptiste Fortin who in 1787 sold them to Charles-Fran├žois Delamarche (1740 - 1817). While Delamarche prospered from the Vaugondy maps, he also defrauded Vaugondy's window Marie Louise Rosalie Dangy of her inheritance and may even have killed her. More by this mapmaker...


Vaugondy, R., Atlas Universel (Paris) 1757.     The Atlas Universel was the crowning glory of the Robert de Vaugondy firm's atlas production. The atlas was revolutionary on many levels and exemplified the Vaugondy creedo commode, complet, univorme, et suive (convenient, complete, uniform, and easy to use). The atlas thus consisted of a wide corpus of maps, both modern and historical, was of moderate height and width, and featured maps of uniform style and structure. They partnered with Antoine Boudet, a shrewd businessman and publisher with whom they had worked previously, to produce the first edition. To minimize his fiscal risk, Boudet sold the atlas first by subscription using a large prospectus, receiving in the process over 1100 pre-orders. The first edition appeared in 1757 and contained beautifully produced maps with elaborate freshly designed allegorical cartouche work, generally by Pierre-Edme Babel, Pierre Philippe Choffard, and Charles Nicholas Cochin. Most of the maps were engraved by the Delahaye firm, the payment for whose services ultimately led to legal disputes. Despite proving a popular work of astounding quality, the Atlas Universal received harsh criticism from fellow cartographers, particularly Philipppe Buache. Ever at odds with the Vaugondys, Buache's critical perspective may have been influenced more by political maneuvering than academic affront. The atlas was issued in multiple editions between 1757 and 1788. Later editions, issued after 1786, were taken over by Charles Delamarche, who inherited the Robert de Vaugondy firm and assumed Boudet's publication rights.


Very good. Some wear and verso repair along original centerfold. Original platemark visible. Minor spotting and offsetting.


Rumsey 3353.031. Pedley, Mary Sponberg Belle et Utile: The Work of the Robert de Vaugondy Family of Mapmakers, 126.