Claes Janszoon Visscher; 1587 - 1652.
Nicolaes Visscher I, son; 1618 - 1679.
Nicolaes Visscher II, grand son; 1649 - 1702.
Elizabeth Visscher, his wife; c1650 - c1730.
For almost a century, the Visscher family stood as one of
the most prominent art dealers and map makers in Amsterdam.
Claes seems to have studied under Jodocus Hondius, and later
purchased a number of plates from Petrus Kaerius with which
he published his first atlas.
From 1638 on, he often signed his work with the latinized
form of his name: Piscator.
He was mostly known for his richly illustrated scenes of battles
and sieges, and for intricately decorated large world maps,
replete with allegories and vignettes (he is considered as
the pioneer of the "Carte à figures" style, later adopted
by Blaeu, Jansson and Speed in particular).
In 1649 he issued the "Tabularum geographicarum contractarum",
an enhanced remake of the immensely popular 1598 Barent Langenes
His son, and then his grand son, continued publishing and
updating a considerable number of maps and atlases.
Of note from Nicolaes I in 1656 the "Atlas contractus orbis
terrarum", from Nicolaes II in 1683 his "Atlas minor" (which
in spite of his name was printed in a full folio format).
And lastly, from Elizabeth in 1702, the "Atlas major".
Galliae seu Franciae tabula,. .
This large map (22 3/16" X 18 3/8") was designed for the
1683 Atlas Minor. It is directly derived from similar maps
designed by both the grand father and father of Nicolaes II
for earlier publications. In turn, it will be reissued later
in the Atlas Major, albeit with a much less imposing cartouche,
and also in de Witt's Atlas Maior.
Above this cartouche note the Apollo and Sun Chariot allegory
.in 1683 the king Louis XIV was nicknamed the Sun King.. But
note that west of Paris, Versailles (and its castle) is rather
inconspicuous: it will become the permanent residence of the
court only a few years afterward.
The coast line still follows the old Sanson model (even though
La Hire had just published a year before his revolutionary
modern scientific map showing a correct delineation.
All in all this map is soon much behind its time, but it remained
for some time a model of accuracy when it comes to mountain
ranges, river courses, city locations and roads linking them.
No text on verso.