By: Henrick Doncker
Date: 1659 (published) Amsterdam
Dimensions: 17.2 x 21.5 inches (43.7 x 54.7 cm)
This is a superb example of a 17th century sea chart of the Caribbean, showing the southeast portion of present day America, the eastern coastline of Mexico and Central America, and the northern coast of Venezuela. The map was published by Henrick Doncker as part of De Zee-Atlas oft Water-Waereld in 1659.
This is the rare first state of Doncker's chart of the West Indies. It extends to show the coastline of North America nearly to New England, all of Central America, and the northern coastline of South America. The chart was derived from Hessel Gerritsz' chart circa 1631, particularly in the depiction of Florida and the Caribbean islands. Doncker's map, however, extends a bit further north, and shows the south-east coast of the United States shifted much further to the east. In addition, Doncker's chart presents a more prominent R. d. S. Petro with an exaggerated Apalachee Bay.
There is a wealth of navigational information including passages, anchorages, sandbanks and shoals, and hundreds of place names fill the coasts. The chart is embellished with a sailing vessel, a compass rose, and an elegant strapwork title cartouche featuring a Native American figure.