By: Jodocus Hondius
Date of Original: 1659 (published) Amsterdam
Original Size: 16.5 x 22 inches
This is a fine print reproduction of a 17th century, decorative map of Africa originally published at the height of the golden age of Dutch map making.
As was the case with most 17th century maps of the African continent, the geography is largely speculative and follows Blaeu's map of 1617. The Cuama River is depicted to originate in the mountains rather than in the Sachaf Lake below the Mountains of the Moon (Lunae Montes). The origin of the Nile conforms to the Ptolemaic tradition of the two twin lakes south of the equator. The Kingdom of Monomotapa occupies a large area of southern Africa.
Surrounding the map on three sides are decorative panels that present the various native people of Africa in their traditional garb. Above the map, a frieze displays six bird's eye views of important African cities and ports, including Tunis, Alexandria, Tanger, and Alger. The map is beautifully embellished with numerous vignettes of sailing ships, sea monsters, and a wide variety of animals within the interior.