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The Kraus Map Collection


Kraus 4, Nova et acurata totius Africae tabula (Between 1601 and 1650)

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Title   Nova et acurata totius Africae tabula
Alternate Title   Nova et acvrata totivs Africae Tabvla
Cartographer   Blaeu, Willem Janszoon (1571 - 1638)
Subject   Africa--Maps
Publisher   Not identified
Repository   Harry Ransom Humanities Research Center
Place of publication
     or creation
Date(s)   Between 1601 and 1650
Format   Atlas
Kraus catalog no.   4
Dimensions in mm.   995 x 1375 mm.
Rights   No known U.S. copyright restrictions. Please cite the Harry Ransom Center, University of Texas at Austin, as the image source.


Large engraved wall map (830 x 1083 mm.) surrounded by printed title (as above), figures of African costume in 16 small panels at the sides, and views of 12 African cities in small panels at the bottom. With contemporary coloring. Mounted on old heavy brown fabric. Overall measure 995 x 1375 mm.

Blaeu's wall map of Africa in an unrecorded early issue.

This map of Africa, printed on four sheets, bears the engraved signature "I. vanden Ende sculp" at the lower left, and is therefore a printing from the original copper-plate. It is less evident just when this printing was made; the lower right cartouche, which usually bears the privilege, with or without a 1608 dating, is here blank. This may signify an issue so early that the privilege and date were not yet inserted; or, on the other hand, it may be a later printing with that text burnished out. It does not agree with any of the issues known to F. C. Wieder, all of which have the privilege, i.e.: 1608 (1 copy located); 1624 (1 imperfect copy located); and 1657 (3 copies, one of them imperfect, located). The present map has been compared with the one in the Royal Geographical Society (attributed to Todeschi, Bologna, c. 1673). The present map is different and clearly earlier.

The map has been varnished and is consequently somewhat browned; some minor repairs. All of these 17th century wall maps are extremely rare. Though they were doubtless produced in some quantity, their display inevitably brought about damage and destruction. In this context, the present map is in very good condition (cf. the reproduction of the Library of Congress Africa wall map, with much tattered margins).

Wieder, F. C., "Descriptive Catalogue of Maps published separately by Blaeu", in: Monumenta Cartographica (ed Wieder) III, 67-75.