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Antique Maps of the Poles

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Blaeu North Pole
Willem Janszoon Blaeu. "Regiones Sub Polo Arctico." Amsterdam: Joan & Cornelius Blaeu, 1642. State 1, without dedication. 16 1/8 x 20 7/8. Engraving. Original hand color. Very good condition. Dutch text on verso.

A superb map of the Arctic regions by Willem (Guilielmo) Janszoon Blaeu (1571-1638), one of the leading cartographers of the early seventeenth century and the progenitor of the famous Blaeu cartographic firm of Amsterdam. Blaeu studied astronomy and sciences with Tycho Brahe, and in 1599 established a globe and instrument making business which soon expanded to include cartographic and geographic publishing. This firm was to go on to become the largest and most important cartographic publishing firms in the world, run by his sons Cornelis (until his death in 1642) and Joan. The maps issued by the Blaeu firm are known for their fine engraving, coloring and design, and have been called "the highest expression of Dutch cartographical art." This map of the North Pole is a very close copy by Blaeu of Jansson's map (cf. above), though with Blaeu's altered decorative motifs. Rhumb lines, compass roses-here highlighted with gold leaf, ship vignettes, and decorative cartouches grace all parts of the map, a decorative and historical gem. $1,600



Colton: Northern Regions
J.H. Colton. New York: G.W. & C.B. Colton & Co., 1855+. 15 7/8 x 13. Lithograph . Very good condition.

Lovely maps of the Poles, issued around mid-century by the Colton cartographic firm of New York. Finely detailed documents showing the extent of knowledge at the time up to and within the Arctic and Antarctic Circles.



"Karte der Nordpolarregion." From Richard Andree's Allgemeiner Handatlas. Bielefeld & Leipzig; 1881. 14 1/2 x 18 3/8. Chromolithograph. Some slight staining in extreme margins. Else, very good condition.

Typical of late nineteenth century German craftsmanship and precision, this map shows the North Pole with great clarity and in detail. An attractive and informative map of the region. $50



"North Polar Chart." Philadelphia: W.M. Bradley & Bro., 1889. Folio. Lithograph. Original hand color. Tears along top center fold, reinforced with archival tape. Else, very good condition.

A precisely detailed map from the Philadelphia publishing firm of William M. Bradley & Bro. While Philadelphia was no longer the main center of cartographic publishing in North America by the late nineteenth century, many fine maps were still produced there, as is evidenced by this map. Topography, political information and physical features are all presented precisely and clearly. $75




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©The Philadelphia Print Shop, Ltd. Last updated July 11, 2015