SANSON D’ABBEVILLE, Nicholas (1600-1667). Amerique Septentrionale Paris: Chez l'Auteur Et chez Pierre Mariette rue S. Iacques a l Esperance, 1650.
SANSON D’ABBEVILLE, Nicholas (1600-1667). Amerique Septentrionale Paris: Chez l'Auteur Et chez Pierre Mariette rue S. Iacques a l Esperance, 1650. Single sheet (16 7/8 x 22 ¾ in.; 42.8 x 57.7 cm.).; 15 ¼ x 22 ¾ in.; 38.7 x 57.7 cm. to the neat line; full margins showing the plate mark. Exceptionally fine engraved map of North and Central America, showing the northeastern and southern coasts and territories in close detail, particularly New France and the Great Lakes, all of which are shown her for the FIRST TIME, the west coast extends as far north as California, which is shown as an island, and New Mexico; the title appears within a fine rococo cartouche upper right, with lines of latitude and longitude, all with fine original color in outline, paper watermark (Coat of Arms, Heawood 673, but without c-k); one or two insignificant marginal stains. THE EXCEEDINGLY RARE FIRST STATE OF THIS SEMINAL MAP OF NORTH AMERICA, ONE OF ONLY TWO EXAMPLES KNOWN - THIS EXAMPLE, THE HECKROTTE COPY, DESCRIBED BY BURDEN in his bibliography: "The Mapping of North America." Sanson's "Amerique Septentrionale" is the most influential map of North America of the 17th-century. For the first time on a printed map are depictions of all five of the Great Lakes: in this early state Lake Ontario is indicated by boundaries which do not have engraved shading, in contrast to the other lakes portrayed; the latitudes at the right and left sides are numbered every 10 degrees; the longitudes along the lower edge are numbered every 10 degrees; the Azores are not yet depicted in the Atlantic; the short segment of the coastline running almost due west just to the north and west of the island of California in not present; in the northwest quarter there are to be found the place names of Anian, Quivira, and Nouvelle Albion; and Conibus is slightly to the east of where it appears in subsequent issues (Heckrotte, pp. 33-35). "LANDMARK MAP OF NORTH AMERICA" (Burden). "In 1650 Sanson published his landmark map of North America. It was drawn, with his usual care, using the sinusoidal projection which is sometimes known by the name Sanson-Flamstead. It is, perhaps, most important for being the first printed map to delineate the five Great Lakes in a recognisable form . Sanson's map was the first to name Lakes Superior and Ontario, and Lakes Erie and Huron, unnamed, appear in a more familiar form . Montreal, recorded here at the important junction of the R des Prairies, Ottawa River, and the St. Lawrence River, was chosen by Champlain in 1611 as the site for a trading post, but it was not until 1642 that it became occupied year round. The waters of the north illustrate the continued hope of a North West Passage. The majority of the cartography of New France was new and would remain as the most accurate until seperseded by Coronelli in 1688. The east coast of North America does not bear much detail, but one interesting feature is the location of "Nouvelle Amsterdam" on an island some distance off shore. The reference to N. Suede is the first on a printed map of the Swedish colony founded in 1638. The south and south-east are largely similar to those of the Hondius, America Septentrionalis, 1636. "To the west S. Fe, Navajo, Apache, Taosij and others all appear for the first time. The first is incorrectly placed on the west bank of the Rio Grande, here again flowing to the south-west. These were the first advances in the geography of this region for some time. California as an island is of the Briggs type with some important alterations; Sanson introduces four placenames from the de Laet map of 1630, C. de Fortune, C. de Pinos, C. de S. Martin and C. de Galera. THE EXTREMELY RARE FIRST STATE OF THIS MAP, KNOWN ONLY IN TWO EXAMPLES, bears no coastlines to the west or north of California, only the names Anian, Quivera, Nouvelle Albion and Conibas appear above" (Burden). The Sanson family was revered among the foremost mapmakers in France for nearly a century. A leading exemplar of the French school of 17th century cartography, Nicholas Sanson is widely regarded as the founder of modern geography and it is generally held that the so-called "Great Age" of French cartography originated with his publications. Sanson's productions were praised for their precision and renowned for their attention to detail without excessive decoration, and this exquisite, hand-colored map of is a prime example of his cartographic mastery. REFERENCES: Burden, Mapping of North America, 294 (this copy); This map was the subject of a study by Warren Heckrotte in his article, "Nicholas Sanson's Map of North American 1650: An apparently unrecorded first state," published in The Map Collector in 1980 (No.12, pp. 33-36), at which time it was the only known copy. A copy of that article accompanies the map. Cf. W-TW 47; Wa-NWC 360.; Leighly 20 ( Rep 3rd state ); Pastoureau, Les Atlas Français; Pastoureau, Atlas du Monde ( Rep 2nd state ); Heidenreich, "Mapping the Great Lakes 1603-1700" in Cartographia, Vo. 17, No. 3, 1980, pp 32-64. This article is followed by sequel on the period 1700 -1760. PROVENANCE: Galerie Grand Rue, Genève, 1980; from the important cartographical library of Warren Heckrotte, (his sale, Rare Cartography, Exploration and Voyages, Part I, PBA Galleries, 29 October, 2015, lot 175). Bookseller Inventory # 72map371 Price: $150,000.