BLAEU, Willem and Johan BLAEU. Theatrum orbis terrarium sive Atlas Novus. Amsterdam: 1649-55.
6 volumes, 2o (550 x 355 mm). Text in Latin, mounted on guards throughout. 8 hand-colored engraved titles, 404 (of 406) maps, engraved and woodcut illustrations in text, ALL COLORED BY A CONTEMPORARY HAND, all mounted on guards. VERY FINE DE-LUXE SET (notably larger than usual, but apparently not large-paper), which originally also included Blaeu's 2-volume town-book, Novum ac Magnum Theatrum Urbium Belgicae, with all the maps in publisher's hand-coloring and the frontispiece-titles HEIGHTENED IN GOLD. Bound in Amsterdam as a special commission (see Koeman [1st ed.] I, p. 99) in strictly contemporary gold-tooled maroon morocco over heavy pasteboard, the sides paneled with fillets and rolls, large gold-blocked corner-ornaments, crown tool where the silk ties (now gone) were laced into the covers, compartments of spines decorated with small floral tools, green morocco lettering pieces, gilt edges; the center of all covers inlaid c. 1675 by an English Restoration binder with a large rectangular piece of scarlet morocco gold-blocked with the ORMONDE ARMS and tooled with a border roll and small corner-ornaments, (slight wear and minor stains, but the binding in UNRESTORED CONDITION).
Provenance: James Butler, 1st Duke and 12th Earl of Ormonde (1610-88), soldier and statesman, commander of the Royalist forces against Cromwell (his coat-of-arms on the bindings); Earls of Portarlington Emo Park, County Queens, Ireland (19th-century bookplate with the Dawson-Damer arms); 8 Sept. 1863 autograph note (loosely inserted) of Alexandrina Octavia Maria Vane, Countess of Portarlington, betting Lionel William Dawson Damer that neither Thomas Brudenell, 7th Earl of Cardigan, nor his wife Adeline Louisa, will ever set foot in Emo House; Sold at Christie's London, 8 May 1974, lot 42 (the town-book then still present) to; Dawson's, Hammond and Traylen, who sold it on to; Dr. J. Hendrickx, Hasselt, Belgium, who consigned it to; Sotheby's London, 2 February 1985, lot 78 (sold to Wolfgang Herz).
This set comprises:
Volume I in two parts, dated 1649 comprises: The World, Europe, Arctic, Scandinavia, Russia, Eastern Europe, Germany and the Low Countries. Engraved hand-colored titles for parts I and II with title printed on slips and pasted in the proper space, 120 double-page hand-colored engraved maps, including 6 folding maps and one single page map. With a duplicate map of Poland. Koeman I, Bl 23B.
Volume II in two parts, dated 1650 comprises: France, Spain, Asia, Africa and America. Engraved hand-colored titles for parts I and II with title printed on slips and pasted in the proper space, 91 (of 92) double-page engraved hand-colored maps, including one folding map. (Without map 65 Chinense Imperium, minor foxing to a few maps.) Koeman I, Bl 24B.
Volume III, dated 1655 comprises: Italy, Greece. Engraved hand-colored title, 62 (of 64) double-page engraved hand-colored maps (including two half-page and one one page map). (Without the 2 "England" supplement maps). Koeman I Bl 37B.
Volume IV, dated 1648 comprises: England and Wales. Engraved hand-colored title, 58 double-page engraved hand-colored maps, hand-colored engraved illustrations in text. (Title inserted from another copy, without printed slip on title, some occasional very minor marginal staining). Koeman I Bl44.
Volume V, dated 1654 comprises: Scotland and Ireland. Engraved hand-colored title printed on slips and pasted in the proper space, full page hand-colored coat-of-arms, 55 double-page engraved hand-colored maps (one one page). (Minor marginal worming at end.) Koeman I Bl49.
Volume VI, dated 1655 comprises: China and Japan. Engraved hand-colored title printed on slips and pasted in the proper space, 17 double-page engraved hand-colored maps (Minor marginal dampstaining.) Koeman I Bl 53.