[OLIVA, Joan] (fl.1570-1614). Portolan Chart of South America, south of the Amazon. [Marseille: c.1600].
Illuminated manuscript portolan chart on vellum, heightened in gold, 520 x 710mm. The chart extending from Tierra del Fuego (part of the Southern continent) to the Amazon, the coastlines in maroon and red, numerous coastal placenames in black and red, the interior of the continent decorated with stylised mountain symbols, the chart decorated with 13 compass roses, placed in a circular fashion around the centre point of the chart, two scale bars at lower corners, the whole chart filled with rhumb lines, the seas decorated with three sea monsters and two sailing ships, gold filled double rule border.
A magnificent illuminated portolan of South America, encompassing Brazil, Peru, Chile and Argentina, the areas under Portugese control with coastline coloured blue, under Spanish control in red, a curiosity since both Nations had joined together in 1580. The depiction of the Amazon on this chart is based on information derived from the expedition of Orellana who sailed up the Amazon in 1542, while the Rio de la Plata is exagerated, similar to the work of Juan Martines.