[A very fine and rare Lafreri-type map of Africa]
Africa Rome: Rughesi, c.1597. Two sheets conjoined, total 530 x 700mm. Trimmed to neatline, old folds flattened with cracks repaired. Some colour spotting.
A large map of Africa, decorated with an ornate title cartouche and numerous ships and sea-monsters. Peculiarly the dedication and armorial in the top corners have been masked by placing oval paper patches on the copper plate, leaving two unprinted areas. The only cartographic work of Fausto Rughesi, a Tuscan architect working in Rome, was a set of maps of the world and four continents, all dedicated to Vincenzo Gonzaga, Duke of Mantua (1562-1612). Gonzaga employed Giovanni Antonio Magini as tutor to his sons and has Magini's Atlas of Italy dedicated to him. Even individually Rughesi's maps are extremely rare: Betz and Burden could find only two examples each of the Africa and America respectively, and neither mention the two blanked-out areas. Considering their extreme rarity it is unlikely that the plates were still being used after the Duke's death; perhaps a particular customer did not want an enemy's name on a map in his collection. BETZ: 36, 'exceedingly beautiful, finely-engraved map of Africa... All of his maps are exceedingly rare'; See SHIRLEY 206 & BURDEN 108.
[Ref: 13085] £24,000.00 ($36,240 • €28,080 rates)