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Extremely rare first edition of Doncker's important Wall Map / Sea Chart of Australia, the Indian Ocean etc., the first map to show information from Abel Tasman's 1644 Voyage.

Extremely rare first edition of Donckers wall map of the Indian Ocean, showingTasmans discoveries on the Australian continent for the first time on a printed map. Doncker's chart would become the standard representation of Australia for the next 60 years, as the model of all Dutch cartography of the area. The map includes details of the Dutch discoveries in Australia of Hartog (1616); Houtman (1619); the Leeuwin (1622) and Carstenszoon (1623); as well as de Wits (1628); and Tasmans second voyage in 1644 (Northern Australia) and Peter Nuyts exploits (1627) (Gowrie Gallery, Printed World III, 2000).

The present example is the extremely rare first edition, which pre-dates the addition of title cartouches on the two sheets. All later states carry a title cartouche, the earliest with 1660 as the date, another with 1666 and still another with a completely revised cartouche, issued about 1680. All editions are very rare, in part because they were probably originally issued separately and only later included in Doncker's Atlases. In his recent census of Doncker Atlases, Jason Hubbard noted that not only were the map sheets oversized (ie. larger than the other maps which appeared in Doncker's atlas), the plates were masked at the edges in the printing process and therefore lack the normal plate marks (further evidence that the primary intention when the plates were initially engraved was to issue the pair in wall map format).

The map was first identified by the important 19th Century Book & Map dealer, Frederik Muller. In 1872, Muiler catalogued a copy of the Doncker atlas dated 1659 (Muller, America, III, nr 1934. 1872). This atlas is given by Koeman as the first Doncker atlas with a world map (Claes Janszoon Visscher, dated 1652) and included 17 charts. Among these charts were 2 sheet charts of both the East Indies and West Indies (Muller 1872, compare also Koeman IV Don 1).

Muller's cataloging of the map in 1896 stated as follows:

La premiere edition de 1659 contient 17 cartes parmi lequelles le plus remarquable est celle des Indes Orientales en deux feuilles. Cette carte donne les decouvertes faites par Tasman en 1644....elle est la premiere carte marine qui donne les decouvertes de l Australie de 1644. [Our Translation: The first edition of 1659 contains 17 charts, among which the most notable is that of the East Indies in two sheets. This map shows the discoveries made by Tasman in 1644 .... it is the first chart that shows [Tasman's] discoveries of Australia of 1644].

In 1894, the Muller company issued a facsimile atlas with rare maps from the Bodel Nyenhuis collection. In part III (Australia) the Doncker map is copied from the 1660 edition (with title cartouche). In the accompanying text it is stated that " in the first Dutch edition of the Doncker Zeeatlas of 1659 the chart was given without either title or cartouche…." The text in the Zeeatlas of 1660 tells us about Australia that: we will call Terra Australis those countreys in the south of Nova Guinea, whether (sic = where) the Hollanders most zayeld (sec= sailed) in the year 1644, and in these our maps are called Nova Hollandia and Nova Zeelandia……"

As noted above, the map is of the utmost rarity, with no examples of the first edition of the map appearing in catalogues or at auction in at least the past 25 years.

Condition Description
Two charts, unjoined. Both frayed at the margins and without lower neat line (as issued). Eastern and western margin added with 2-6 mm in manuscript. A small part of Africa supplied in manuscript. Fairly even, all over browning.

The fraying of the lo