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The Geographic Source of Dutch Wealth

Indochina/ Malaysia/ Indonesia/ Philippines/ Spice Islands. MERCATOR, G./ HONDIUS, J. [Amsterdam, 1613]
Insulae Indiae Orientalis...
Fine hand color; lightly toned else excellent condition.


13 ½ x 18 5/8 inches.
One of the most richly engraved early maps of the East Indies and Spice Islands depicted in the early decades of the Dutch commercial ventures in the area. Much of the geographical data for this map is based on the portolan charts of the Portuguese cartographer, Bartolomeu Lasso and on Plancius' important map of the region. "Insulae Indiae Orientalis is one of the few maps to show any trace of Francis Drake’s presence in Southeast Asia” (Suarez). The eastern coast of Sulawesi (Gilolo on the map) reflects the complicated shoreline that almost destroyed Drake’s ship, and his landfall on the southern coast of Java (the first achieved by a European) is noted on the map “Huc Franciscus Dra.”
The map’s engraving displays the bold vitality characteristic of the Jodocus Hondius style, whose partnership with the heirs of Gerard Mercator resulted in the addition of several new maps to the Mercator atlas in 1606, including this one. In addition to the beautiful strapwork embellishing the cartouches, the map is graced with elegant compass roses and a naval battle.

van der Krogt 8500:1A; Suarez, Mapping of Southeast Asia, pp. 193-96; Quirino, p. 80.

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