16 November 2005
SANSON D'ABBEVILLE, Nicolas (1600-1667). Description de tout L'Univers en plusieurs cartes, & en divers traitez de Geographie et d'Histoire ... par Mrs Sanson Pere & Fils. Amsterdam: Francois Halma, 1700.
6 parts in one volume, including Bion's L'Usage des globes and Luyts' Tables, 4° (220 x 165mm). Double page letterpress title in red and black with engraved vignette, hand coloured initials and headpieces, double-page engraved frontispiece and 74 maps, the Bion with one double-page celestial map and 13 diagrams, 9 folding, COLOURED IN A CONTEMPORARY HAND THROUGHOUT, AND HEIGHTENED IN GILT. (Occasional very light spotting.) Contemporary calf (neatly rebacked, old spine sections laid down), modern calf box. Provenance: Unidentified armorial on covers.
A very fine copy of Sanson's gentleman's pocket atlas, with Bion's useful work on globes. In this example the contemporary Dutch colouring is particularly good and highly detailed, with heightening in gold to cartouches (shields, spears, clothes etc.) and to the principal towns on all the maps. Whilst not of the quality of the work of the Van Santens in Amsterdam, it reflects the concept in Dutch cartography of the superior quality copy being heightened in gold, for presentation to dignitaries. Although this atlas is always listed under Nicolas Sanson, it is essentially Francois Halma's plagiarised pocket version of the Sanson atlas, with the map divided into Continent groups. Halma also reprinted Mercator's Ptolemy and Bonfrere's Geography for the growing French market. Phillips 528.
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