MOLL, Herman (fl. 1678-1732)
A New & Exact Map of the Electorate of Brunswick-Lunenburg and ye rest of ye Kings Dominions in Germany, Very much Improved by ye kind Assistance of severall Curious Gentlemen, natives of those Countries. To His Most Sacred Majesty George King of Great Britain, France and Ireland, Elector of Brunswick-Lunenburg &c.
London: Herman Moll and Philip Overton, c. 1715 [this issue c. 1740]. Hand-coloured engraving. Creased vertically where map was folded into atlas. Sheet size: 24 1/2 x 39 7/8 inches.
Moll's Map of King George I's dominions in Germany.
Brunswick-Lunenburg had been ruled by one family, descendants of Guelph, since the 13th century. One branch of this ancient family brought forth the Hanoverian Kings of Great Britain. It was the first of these Kings, George I, who was "so highly - pleased with this Map, that he Presented the Author with a Gold Medal, &c. as a mark of his Royal Favour, and approbation of the Performance." The map is, of course, dedicated to the King, and it is almost certainly the first English map of the recently crowned King's homeland.
With a large Royal Coat of Arms, a striking, militaristic cartouche, an inset map of King George's route from Harburg to Greenwich, and an inset of Saxon Lauwenburg (recently added to the King's German dominions), Moll celebrates the King's ancestral homeland. He includes as well a numbered index of 50 forests and mentions several major silver mines. "These Mines bring a great yearly Revenue to his Majesty..."
Herman Moll came to London in about 1678 from Germany or Holland and worked as an engraver for Moses Pitt, among others. He clearly had a talent for making interesting friends and provided maps for Daniel Defoe's Robinson Carusoe and Jonathan Swift's Gulliver's Travels. He also knew explorer/buccaneer William Dampier and the chemist Robert Boyle. From 1689, he had his own London shop. Maps of a uniquely Moll character began to appear during Queen Anne's reign, and his individual style of mapmaking grew increasingly more distinct as his career progressed.
Dictionary of National Biography.