antiquesandartireland.com

Information about Art, Antiques and Auctions in Ireland and around the world
  • ABOUT
  • About Des
  • Contact
  • THE MOST LUXURIOUS ATLAS IN THE HISTORY OF PRINTED MAPS

    The Atlas Major.

    The Atlas Major.

    The first complete edition of the most luxurious atlas in the history of printed maps – Joannes Blaeu’s Atlas Major – comes up at Sotheby’s in London on November 17.  Estimated at £240,000-320,000 it was the largest and most expensive book when published in the 17th century.  Published in 1662 the Atlas Major remains the most magnificent work of its kind ever produced. Sotheby’s describe it as one of the true masterpieces of the Dutch Golden Age.

    The Atlas Major covers the entirety of known world in the 17th Century, with particular emphasis on Europe, but with separate volumes dedicated to America and China. At the time of production, the atlas’s cartography, geographical scope and craftsmanship were unprecedented. Comprising 11 large folio volumes, containing 594 engraved maps, plans, and views, all finely coloured by hand in exquisite detail, and nearly 3,000 pages of text, this massive atlas took a team of printers and binders craftsmen many months to produce. Only 300 sets are believed to have been made. Johannes Blaeu succeeded his father Willem as head cartographer at the Dutch East India Company. It will lead an auction of Travel Atlases, Maps and Natural History.

    Leave a Reply