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VUILLEMIN, Alexandre A.
[A large-format French map of the world on Mercator's Projection] Nouveau Planisphère Indiquant les grandes divisions physiques et politiques de la Terre, la Géographie statistique et industrielle des differents états, les Colonies Europèennes et l'époque ders principales découvertes. Paris: Veuve Turgis, 1854. Original colour. Steel engraving. 660 x 880mm. Excellent condition with wide margins.
Large, detailed map of the world, published in the middle of the 19th century. It shows the latest discoveries in Antarctica and geological features including the Rocky Mountains and the mythical 'Mountains of Kong', with vignettes of fishing and whale hunting. Under the maps are comparative tables of mountain heights and a map of the distribution of the races.
($1,563 • €1,438 rates)
[A map of the Americas highlighting mountain ranges] Carte de L'Amérique Septentrionale et Méridonale divisée en ses Principeaux Etats; pour servir a l'instruction de la Jeunesse. Paris, Jean, 1830. Original colour. 525 x 745mm.
A large and detailed map of the Americas, with an inset of Arctic America with Alaska still marked 'Russian America'. On the map the areas are coloured to mark who controls them. 'New Albion' is marked, an area of Oregon under joint British/US control, created in the Treaty of 1818, although the name was given to the area by Sir Francis Drake in 1579.
The map highlights the mountain ranges, not only in the Americas but also in western Africa and Europe. Particularly prominent is the infamous 'Mountains of Kong' across Guinea, the range invented by the famous cartographer James Rennell to account for the eastward flow of the River Niger, as described in a commentary on Mungo Park's travels.
($563 • €518 rates)
[A 3D plaster model relief map of Hong Kong] [Hong Kong.] Kowloon: Kwong Wah Three Dimensional Geographical Model Supply Co., c.,1955. Relief map, modelled in plaster and hand coloured, printed paper name lables, mounted on hardboard, in contemporary frame (without glass). Total 470 x 690mm. Some wear, including to name labels.
A very unusual map of Hong Kong, modelled in plaster to show relief in 3D, with the mountains raised up to c.20mm above sea level, and painted green, yellow and brown to emphasise heights. Important places have paper labels stuck on, with names written in Chinese and English; the key lower right is also chipped. The streets of Victoria and Kowloon are painted on, as are major roads and the Canton-Kowloon Railway.
We are basing our dating on the vague representation of the Tai Lam Chung Reservoir, under construction between 1952 and 1957. The key has the publisher's details in Cantonese, but unfortunately has no date.
($4,063 • €3,738 rates)
[A French Republican map of Africa] Carte Générale et Politique de l'Afrique. Paris: Chanlaire & Mentelle, 1799. Original colour. 350 x 460mm. Mapseller's ink stamp within plate mark.
A map of the continent of Africa published in "An VI" of the French Prepublic. Of interest are the numerous mountain ranges criss-crossing the interior, including the infamous 'Mountains of Kong'
($200 • €184 rates)
LAS CASAS, Emmanuel.
[A scarce English edition of La Sage's map of Africa] Africa with its Geographical Divisions, European Colonies, &c, &c. London: R. Juigné, 1813. Original colour. Map 345 x 375mm, set in letterpress text, total printed area 460 x 675mm.
An unusual English edition of this map of Africa, which has stripped away the fictitious interior of earlier maps, but unfortunately including Rennell's fictitious 'Mountains of Kong' in West Africa. The continent is divided into six areas: Egypt, Barbary, Western Coast, Southern Part, Eastern Coast, and, largest of all, 'Interior Parts almost entirely Unknown'. Thus much of the detail is coastal, for example marking the Slave Forts of Elmina & Fort Christiansbourg on the Guinea coast five years after the Royal Navy's West Africa Squadron started anti-slaver patrols in 1808. The routes of five explorers are shown: James Bruce's search for the source of the Nile in Nubia and Abyssinia (1768-71); François Levaillant in South Africa (1781-4); William George Browne's expedition to Darfur (1793); Mungo Park in the Gambia (1795-7); & Hormann in Egypt and Libya (1798). Around the map is extensive descriptive historical and geographic text. The was published in 'Le Sage'
($438 • €403 rates)
[Mungo Park's search for the River Niger] The Route of Mr Mungo Park, from Pisania on the River Gambia, to Silla, on the River Joliba, or Niger; With his return by the Southern Route, to Pisania. Compiled from Mr Park's Observations, Notes, & Sketches. London: James Rennell, 1798. Some original outline colour. 255 x 660mm. Top edge slightly trimmed for binding, new margin added.
The official map of the routre of the Scottish explorer Mungo Park (1774-1806) in search of the Niger, here published in his 'Travels in the Interior Districts of Africa'. Under the patronage of Sir Joseph Banks and the African Association, Park travelled to Africa to seek the source of the River Niger (1795-7). His expedition was delayed by captivity and illness (he spent seven months convalescing in a man's home), and he was believed dead when he returned to Britain. Park had little experience as a cartographer, so the job of compiling the maps for the official account fell to Major James Rennell, former cartographer to the East India Company in Bengal. He too had fallen foul of locals and had to retire from active service because of the wounds he had received. He became a research cartographer, becoming a pioneer of oceanography. He used a variety of sources to compile this map and in doing so made his greatest cartographic error: he extrapolated a single mountain seen by Park into a huge range, creating the 'Mountains of Kong', which blighted maps of West Africa for most of the nineteenth century. Here they are referred to in a note 'A Chain of Great Mountains extends along these Parallels'.
($625 • €575 rates)
[The first appearance of the infamous 'Mountains of Kong'] A Map shewing the Progress of Discovery & Improvement, in the Geography of North Africa. London: James Rennell, 1798. Some original outline colour. 430 x 725mm. Bottom right edge trimmed for binding, new margin added.
A map of North Africa compiled by James Rennell to illustrate his appendix to Mungo Park's 'Travels in the Interior Districts of Africa', the account of Park's search for the source of the River Niger. Under the patronage of Sir Joseph Banks and the African Association, Park travelled to Africa to seek the source of the River Niger (1795-7). His expedition was delayed by captivity and illness (he spent seven months convalescing in a man's home), and he was believed dead when he returned to Britain. Because Park had little experience as a cartographer, the job of compiling the maps for the official account fell to Major James Rennell (1742-1830), former cartographer to the East India Company in Bengal. He too had fallen foul of locals and had to retire from active service because of the wounds he had received. He became a research cartographer, pioneering oceanography. He used a variety of sources to compile this map and in doing so made his greatest cartographic error: he extrapolated a single mountain seen by Park into a huge range, creating the 'Mountains of Kong', running across West Africa. Such was Rennell's reputation that his theory was instantly accepted and the 'Mountains of Kong' blighted maps of Africa for most of the nineteenth century and occasionally beyond.
($688 • €633 rates)
[Portrait of the explorer Mungo Park from the account of his first Niger Expedition] Mr M. Park. London: G. Nichol, 1799. Stipple engraving. Sheet 270 x 210mm.
A fine stipple engraved oval portrait of the Scottish explorer Mungo Park (1774-1806), engraved by Thomas Dickinson after Edridge and published as the frontispiece to his 'Travels in the Interior Districts of Africa'. Under the patronage of Sir Joseph Banks and the African Association, Park travelled to Africa to seek the source of the River Niger (1795-7). His expedition was delayed by captivity and illness (he spent seven months convalescing in a man's home), and he was believed dead when he returned to Britain. His detailed account of his travels gave Europeans one of the first accurate descriptions of the African interior and its inhabitants. He wrote that the Mandinka he met being taken to the European slave ships believed they were going to be eaten by the whites! His summation that 'whatever difference there is between the negro and European, in the conformation of the nose, and the colour of the skin, there is none in the genuine sympathies and characteristic feelings of our common nature' did much for the Abolitionist cause. Park returned to the Niger in 1805; this time his luck deserted him and he drowned trying to escape a native attack.
($188 • €173 rates)
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