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[North America] To the Right Honourable John Lord Sommers...this Map of North America according to ye newest and most exact observations..
London: "Printed for I. Bowles ... T. Bowles ... P. Overton", 1724. Copper-engraved map, period hand-colouring in outline. Inset view of a codfishery, ten inset maps of various harbors. An early issue of Moll's great "Codfish" map of North America. Herman Moll was, like many an emigré , a zealously patriotic Englishman and cartographical fighter in the globalization contest the European nations conducted from the 15th century into the 20th. Here in one of his superbly characteristic maps of North America, he fights with De L'Isle (the great French mapmaker of the period) about the respective territorial possessions of Britain and France. In contradistinction to De L'Isle's 1718 map, Moll's reduces French Louisiana to a region south of the Ohio River and gives Great Britain Labrador (as New Britain). The achievement of British dominance would be accomplished through trade, colonialization, war and piracy. Depicting one aspect of British success, Moll includes here a rather detailed depiction of the codfishing industry, including the making of cod liver oil. Throughout the 17th century, the British had the greatest number of fishing boats in the Grand Banks. Dried codfish was a staple of the British Navy, and a favorite throughout Europe. As naval supremacy requires good charts, this map has ten inset charts of important North and South America ports: from Boston to Cartagena. And finally, for the benefit perhaps of any would-be British privateer, Moll includes (as he did in his map of the West Indies) detailed information about the annual Spanish convoy that wound around the Gulf of Mexico picking up silver, gold and gems from South and Central America. Moll's "maps of North America and the Eastern seaboard must have played an important role in shaping the geographical perception of the Americas held by his contemporaries, emphasizing the untapped resources and the wealth of the colonies, and the opportunities for any that would make the passage" (Baynton-Williams). The present map was part of Herman Moll's magnificent folio work, A New and Compleat Atlas . Moll was the most important cartographer working in London during his era, a career that spanned over fifty years. His origins have been a source of scholarly debate; however, the prevailing opinion suggests that he hailed from the Hanseatic port city of Bremen, Germany. Joining a number of his countrymen, he fled the turmoil of the Scanian Wars for London, and in 1678 is first recorded as working there as an engraver for Moses Pitt on the production of the English Atlas . It was not long before Moll found himself as a charter member of London's most interesting social circle, which congregated at Jonathan's Coffee House at Number 20 Exchange Alley, Cornhill. It was at this establishment that speculators met to trade equities (most notoriously South Sea Company shares). Moll's coffeehouse circle included the scientist Robert Hooke, the archaeologist William Stuckley, the authors Jonathan Swift and Daniel Defoe, and the intellectually-gifted pirates William Dampier, Woodes Rogers and William Hacke. From these friends, Moll gained a great deal of privileged information that was later conveyed in his cartographic works, some appearing in the works of these same figures. Moll was highly astute, both politically and commercially, and he was consistently able to craft maps and atlases that appealed to the particular fancy of wealthy individual patrons, as well as the popular trends of the day. In many cases, his works are amongst the very finest maps of their subjects ever created with toponymy in the English language. This copy an early issue with the imprint including John Bowles at his Stocks Market address (i.e. his location between 1723 and 1727). Later issues include his address as "Mercers Hall" (between 1727 and 1731) and "at the Black Horse" (1732 and later). This early issue before the addition of John King to the imprint (circa 1726). McLaughlin, The Mapping of California as an Island 192; Tooley, "California as an Island," 82 in Tooley, The Mapping of America ; Goss, The Mapping of North America , p. 118; Schwartz & Ehrenberg, The Mapping of America pl. 79; Kurlansky, Cod p. 58-60; cf. Ashley Baynton-Williams, "The World Described" in Map Forum , Issue 1 (Spring 2004); cf. Reinharz, The Cartographer and the Literati - Herman Moll and his Intellectual Circle (Lewiston, 1997).
      [Bookseller: Donald Heald Rare Books]
Last Found On: 2017-08-08           Check availability:      IOBABooks    

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