By: Abraham Ortelius /Joannes Baptista Vrientes
Date: 1609 (Published) Antwerp
Dimensions: 17.25 x 22.5 inches (44 cm x 57 cm)
This decorative map is an extraordinary example of the Ortelius/Vrients edition of Baptista Boazio’s remarkable map of 1599. The map is oriented with north to the right, and depicts Ireland in its entirety. Such a presentation that many today would view as odd was a common practice in the 16th and 17th century. The idea was to orient the map based on the how most ships would approach the mapped location. Many early maps of the Americas employ this same tactic with north located on the right side of the map, while maps of the East Indies orient north to the left. Sometimes however, the orientation would also be a result of how the mapped area would best fit on one sheet of paper.
Depicted are the already then extant provinces of Ulster, Connaught, Leinster and Muster, with counties delineated by dotted boundary lines. The vibrancy of the map is due in part to its depictions of geophysical features, including forests, mountains, all rivers and waterways, cities, towns, settlements and ports. Major landowners are denoted, and the map includes a table in the lower left quadrant which facilitates the understanding of place names such as Caputfamiliae, or head of the family while Mc before a name indicates a region dominated by one related family.
Monsters of fabulous design embellish the seas, as do magnificent frigates, one of them aflame, and a humble fisherman’s craft. The man in the small craft is waving trident near the dedicatory cartouche. The map is further adorned with three additional strapwork cartouches.
Boazio’s map of Ireland was added by Vrients when he took over the publication of Ortelius’ work following the death of Ortelius.
Condition: This map is in A condition. The hand coloring is superbly done and the margins that have been professionally extended are even and unmarked. Toning is even and light throughout the map.
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