By: Louis Brion de la Tour
Date: 1766 (dated)
Dimensions: 15 x 20.5 inches (38 x 52 cm)
This lovely and fascinating map is a rare example of Brion’s work which has retained the entire folio leaves intact. The map is usually found cut to the colored border, without the text and extended Baroque-style second border which includes text on either side of the map. The map itself is beautiful and highly detailed, and the accompanying text (in French) richly rewarding to anyone taking the time to read it. The map depicts in detail the various empires and peoples who ruled the territories within its confines, which includes most of what is today commonly referred to as the Middle East. Peoples named include European Turkey (Ottoman), Tartars, Turkmen, Uzbeks, Kurds and more. At the time this map was published, the Ottoman Empire covered considerable territory in Europe, Asia and Africa.
Much of the territory depicted is now at war and many of the ruins and remnants of the great civilizations which still existed when this map was made have been looted, destroyed or scattered. The first section of the French text which borders the right and left sides of the map goes into some detail describing Turquie Asiatique (Turkish Asia), citing the capital of each region and describing some customs and traditions and means of livelihood for the regions. A second section is devoted to Persie (Persia or modern-day Iran) in which the primary cities of Ispahan and Tauris are described as beautiful and magnificent, with much detail which renders the text colorful and evocative. The third section is devoted to ancient geography, and contains fascinating descriptions of some of the ancient kingdoms, especially those of Anatolia, such as Bithynia, and the Troad and even Troy itself. It includes mention of Nicea, where the church council was held.
The ornate Baroque outer border is a fantasy including four pairs of industrious putti hard at work as geographers and cartographers, with all the tools of their trade depicted in detail. Each pair is working on a different project. The border also includes urns and floral arrangements.
Condition: This map is in A condition. Hand colored, with some original and some more recent
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