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Merian's 1646 world map with Gothic script and polar insets

Place/Date: Frankfurt / 1646
Title: Nova Totius Terrarum Orbis Geographica ac Hydrographica Tabula
35.9 x 24.9 cm (14.1 x 9.8 in)
Hand color
Condition Rating
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This beautifully engraved world map is presented on Mercator’s projection with cartography closely copied from Blaeu’s world map of 1606. The Latin title is printed at top, outside the neatline. A German gothic script title and notation concerning the discovery of the Americas in 1492 covers the unknown interior of North America.

California is a peninsula, and plenty of open ended waterways in the eastern part of North America leave open the question of a Northwest Passage. Two polar projections in lower corners partially obscure the great southern landmass that is connected with New Guinea. The map is finely decorated with sea monsters, galleons and compass roses.

This is the second state without Merian’s signature in the plate; published in Neuwe Archontologia Cosmica.


Condition Description

A nice impression with attractive color and a printer's crease adjacent to centerfold at bottom that has been pressed flat. There is a small hole in the bottom blank margin that has been professionally repaired.


Shirley p. 345.

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