MONTANUS, Arnoldus (c. 1625-1683)
De Nieuwe en Onbekende Weereld: of Beschryving van America en 'Tzuid-land
Amsterdam: Jacob Meurs, 1671. Quarto. (12 1/4 x 7 3/4 inches). ,585,pp. Dutch text in two columns. Engraved title, seven engraved portraits, thirty-one engraved double-page plates, large folding hemispheric map, and fifteen engraved double-page maps. Seventy engraved illustrations in the text.
Early 20th-century half mottled calf over marbled paper covered boards, spine with raised bands, red morocco lettering piece
Provenance: J. J. A. Poley (bookplate on the front pastedown)
One of the most interesting of iconographic and cartographic sources of early Americana.
Correctly called "a classic book on America" by Borba de Moraes, Montanus' narrative contains a wealth of interesting maps and illustrations on both North and South America. The work was later translated into English, with various alterations, by John Ogilby, but this Dutch edition is the true first. The North American section of Montanus contains notable versions of the Blaeu map of New England and New Netherland, as well as versions of the John Smith Virginia and Carolina maps. Among the engravings in the text is one of the first engraved views of New York (the very first, the Van der Donck view, appeared twenty years earlier). There is also a detailed map of Bermuda. There are numerous engraved views of cities and scenes in Mexico and the Caribbean. Much of the second half of the volume is devoted to Brazil, where the Dutch were deeply involved for decades in the 17th century, illustrated with numerous maps and views. The large double-sheet views are excellent and much copied in later publications; but, as Church comments, "The finely executed engravings of this work are especially brilliant in this, the original edition." Howes states that the portrait of the Prince of Nassau, present herein, only appears in the first issue. The large map, credited here to "Gerardum a Schaden," as stated in Borba de Moraes, is also sometimes found as credited to "Jacobum Meursium," the publisher of the book.
Church 613; Howes M733, "b"; Asher, New Netherland 14; Sabin 50086; Servies 200.