Carte du Gouvernement de l'Amerique. - #2022


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DATE: c1720

MAP MAKER: Henri Abraham Chatelain.

SIZE: 17 5/16" X 13".

PRICE: $400.00

 

Henri Abraham Chatelain; 1684-1743.

Little is known about this Parisian born protestant minister.
A prolific engraver he resided in London (from 1710), then in The Hague (from 1721) and finally in Amsterdam from 1728.
His only call to fame is for his contribution to the encyclopedic "Atlas Historique, ou Nouvelle Introduction à l'Histoire, à la Chronologie, et à la Géographie..." with text by Nicholas Gueudeville. It was issued several times between 1705 and 1721, and then again between 1732 and 1739.
Most of the maps he prepared for this monumental seven volume work were derived from De L'isle, sometimes seemingly from de Wit. They are characteristically replete with detailed annotations and explanations, sometimes to the point of showing much more text than image.

Carte du Gouvernement de l'Amerique.

This large composition (17 5/16" X 13") has for inset a small (3 ¾" X 5 1/8") map of the Americas, very influenced by the Sanson design (see the California "island").
This plate depicts the European possessions in the Americas, it is a wonderful example of Chatelain's encyclopedic style. It was included in the Atlas Historique, as the thirty-eighth map in volume one.
One of the most fascinating plates in the atlas, it outlines the division of European possessions across the Hemisphere. The large central table lists the principal governmental infrastructures, ecclesiastical organizations, and geographical delineations. It comprises four elaborate vignettes showing the elegant settings of the Spanish governing bodies for the "Indies". A key identifying the principal locations of the European possessions is also provided, along with a detailed historical note.
The small inset map of North and South America shows California as an island and New Mexico extending across most of western North America up into Canada.
By combining a wealth of information and geographical observation, with delicate engraving and an uncomplicated composition, this elegant plate is a superb example from the golden age of French mapmaking.
No text on verso.

 

 

 

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