Herman Moll; c1654-1732.
A noted dutch engraver of german descent, Moll emigrated
from Holland, and set shop in London around 1680. By the turn
of the century, he had achieved prominence in the map publishing
business thanks to a tireless production of atlas volumes,
geography books, decorative maps and miniature maps, .all
of distinguished quality.
He is often credited for being the first mapmaker to use the
London meridian as a universal longitude reference.
His "new and exact map of the dominions of the King of Great
Britain on ye continent of north America" (also known as the
"Beaver map") first issued in 1715, was a basis for the british
to counterclaim the french territorial designs after the spanish
succession war (1702-1713).
He was often copied by other publishers (of which he was very
conscious). But, as was customary at that time, he also made
good use of the works produced by his peers.
Among his noted productions: "Atlas Manuale" in 1709, "Atlas
Geographicus" in 1711, "The world described" in 1719-1736,
"A new description of England and Wales" in 1724 in collaboration
with T&J Bowles, reissued under various titles in 1726, 1728,
1739, 1747, 1753; and the 1727 "Atlas minor".
A draft of the Golden & adjacent Islands, with part
of ye Isthmus of Darien .
A new map of ye
Isthmus of Darien in America, the bay of Panama, .
These two large maps (together: 19" X 23 ¼") were engraved
in 1699 by Moll for inclusion in William Hacke "A collection
of original voyages" to illustrate chapter II: "Captain Sharp's
journey over the Isthmus of Darien,.".
The present item is state 2, which was printed for a second
issue in 1710. The same plate was seemingly reused later,
in particular in 1729 for a later edition of the same work,
and also in 1721 by John Senex for his "A new general Atlas
of the world".
The top map, simplistic and minimalist, is very much in the
manner of Robert Morden (cartographer and publisher in London
at that time).
The lower map may have been from Hacke or Sharp hand.
They are both evocating the ill fated 1698-1700 scottish colonization
attempt in Panama. Both depict a grandiose fort Saint Andrew
protecting the walled city of 'New Edinburg'. In reality,
the defenses were much more modest, and the town was taken
by the spaniards who evicted the scots (many of them relocating
in present day USA, establishing new towns often named Darien
in memory of their adventure).
No text on verso.