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De Wit's map of Greece

Title
Peloponnesus Hodiae Moreae Peloponnesus Hodiae Moreae Distincte Divisum in Omnes suas Provincias, Hodiernas atque Veteres, Cui et adiunguntur Insulae Cefalonia, Zante, Cerigo et St. Maura Acore.
Author
WIT, Frederick de
Publisher
Auctore F. de Wit,
Publication place
Amsterdam,
Publication date
1690.
Dimensions
535 by 795mm. (21 by 31.25 inches).
Price
£3,000
Reference
12730

Description

First edition, first state. Large engraved map, 2 sheets joined (500 by 760mm to the neatline, full margins), with contemporary hand-colour in full. (Lower edge a little browned and beginning to fray near the left-hand corner).

Notes

A spectacular map of Greece and surrounding islands, the first issue, with De Wit's imprint. The title is within an elaborate allegorical cartouche lower left, showing the triumphant Venetian Lion of St. Mark subjugating Ottoman prisoners, in commemoration of the Serene Republic of Venice's recent victories in the Sixth Ottoman – Venetian War, the "Great Turkish War", in Morea or the Peloponnese peninsula in Southern Greece.

The detailed map is surrounded by 14 vignettes of cities and castles, including: Navarino, Zarnata, Cas.l Tornes, Passava, Malvasia (now Monemvasia), Patrasso (Patrass), Coron (Korone), Napoli di Romania (Nafplio), Modon (Methoni), Misitra olam Sparta (Sparta), Atene (Athens), Cerigo (Kythira), S. Maura (Lefkada), and Lepanto.

When Frederick de Wit (1630-1706) moved to Amsterdam in 1648 he was already a well-established cartographic artist, engraving a plan of Haarlem around 1648 and providing city views for Antonius Sanderus's "Flandria Illustrata". He was apprenticed to Willem Blaeu, but by 1654 he had his own business, issuing his own map of the world, "Nova Totius Terrarum Orbis Tabula", as both a wall map and a folio mapsheet in 1660. Two years later, he began to print atlases, the earliest of which were small compilations of prints from the stock of contemporaries. His later work included larger atlases of his own work. By the 1770s, de Wit was making atlases with over 150 maps.

Bibliography

Zacharakis 2387.