The second state of Bellin’s map of the Kuril Islands
By BELLIN, Jacques Nicolas and PRÉVOST, Abbé Antoine François de, 1775
Carte des Isles Kuriles d’après la Carte Russe. Dressée et Gravée par Laurent.
- Author: BELLIN, Jacques Nicolas and PRÉVOST, Abbé Antoine François de
- Publication date: c1775
- Physical description: Engraved map with original hand colour.
- Dimensions: 270 by 352mm. (10.75 by 13.75 inches).
- Inventory reference: 15828
Jacques-Nicolas Bellin (1703–1772) was among the most important mapmakers of the eighteenth century. In 1721, at the age of eighteen, he was appointed hydrographer (chief cartographer) to the French Navy. In August 1741, he became the first Ingénieur de la Marine of the Depot des cartes et plans de la Marine (the French Hydrographic Office) and was named Official Hydrographer of the French King.
During his term as Official Hydrographer, the Depot was the single most active centre for the production of sea charts and maps, including a large folio format sea-chart of France, the Neptune Francois. He also produced a number of sea-atlases of the world, e.g., the Atlas Maritime and the Hydrographie Francaise. These gained fame, distinction, and respect all over Europe and were republished throughout the eighteenth and even in the succeeding century.
Bellin also produced maps of smaller format, such as the 1764 Petit Atlas Maritime, containing 580 finely detailed charts. He contributed a few maps to the 15-volume Histoire Generale des Voyages of Antoine François Prévost or simply known l’Abbe Prevost.
Bellin set a very high standard of workmanship and accuracy, thus can be regarded as a leading role in European cartography and geography.