1 April 2014
VISSCHER, Nicolaes (1618-1679). Orbis Terrarum Nova et Accuratissima Tabula. Amsterdam: 1658.
Engraved double-hemisphere map of the world, outline colored by a contemporary hand, image 470 x 554 mm (522 x 626 mm sheet). Surmounted by north and south polar projections with contemporary fully colored border decoration of mythological scenes, drawn by the Dutch painter Nicolaes Berchem and depicting Zeus and Neptune in chariots, the rape of Persephone and Demeter receiving the fruits of the earth. (Minor splitting at top and bottom of fold, very slight darkening.) Matted, framed and glazed.
Visscher's magnificent Orbis Terrarum Nova et Accuratissima Tabula is one of the most decorative world maps. "It can be regarded as the master forerunner of a number of highly decorative Dutch world maps produced throughout the remainder of the century" (Shirley). Cartographically, the map is largely based on Joan Blaeu's 1648 grand wall map of the world. "For accuracy according to the knowledge of their time, magnificence of presentation and richness of decoration, the Dutch maps of the 17th century have never been surpassed" (Tooley, Maps and Map-Makers p. 29). Shirley 406.
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