17th Century Maps, American Maps, Copperplate, Engraving, Maps

Blaeu’s Map of Bermuda

Mappa Aestivarum Insularum Alias Barmudas Dictarum. . . . By Willem J. Blaeu. Published by W. Blaeu, Amsterdam. Handcolored copper plate engraving, c.1633. Image size 15 5/8 x 20 11/16" (396 x 525 mm) plus margins. French text on verso. Good condition save for paper toning, slight fading and marginal mat line. Original coloring. LINK.

Mappa Aestivarum Insularum Alias Barmudas Dictarum. . . . By Willem J. Blaeu. Published by W. Blaeu, Amsterdam. Handcolored copper plate engraving, c.1633. Image size 15 5/8 x 20 11/16″ (396 x 525 mm) plus margins. French text on verso. Good condition save for paper toning, slight fading and marginal mat line. Original coloring. LINK.

Today we are sharing this stunning c.1633 Willem J. Blaeu map of Bermuda. Cartographically, this map was based upon Richard Norwood’s 1618 survey for the Bermuda Company. The map shows the division of land into “Tribes”, a short-lived name for what later became administrative parishes. Many tiny houses dot the map, locating settlements, along with a scattering of minute cannons, marking the defensible points. At the bottom is a color-coded chart listing both the Bermuda Company stockholders and the landowners, in twelve columns.

(detail of) Mappa Aestivarum Insularum Alias Barmudas Dictarum. . . .

(detail of) Mappa Aestivarum Insularum Alias Barmudas Dictarum. . . .

The highly embellished cartouche at center features Neptune astride the royal coat of arms of England, trident in one hand and a galleon in the other.  The cartouche is adorned on both sides by mermaids, as a bountiful string of fish hangs from the bottom. Many other engraved embellishments ornament this beautiful map, including a stunning compass rose, a coat of arms, and a medallion.

(detail of) Mappa Aestivarum Insularum Alias Barmudas Dictarum. . . .

(detail of) Mappa Aestivarum Insularum Alias Barmudas Dictarum. . . .

(detail of) Mappa Aestivarum Insularum Alias Barmudas Dictarum. . . .

(detail of) Mappa Aestivarum Insularum Alias Barmudas Dictarum. . . .

(detail of) Mappa Aestivarum Insularum Alias Barmudas Dictarum. . . .

(detail of) Mappa Aestivarum Insularum Alias Barmudas Dictarum. . . .

 

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