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A striking dark impression of this marvelous set of maps from De Fer, including a World map with California as an island, incomplete Australia and portraits of famous explorers; America with California as and Island; set of three spheres--terrestrial, celestial and armillary; and excellent maps of Asia, Africa w/the unique De Fer bulge in the southwest, and Europe. The maps will also be offered separately beginnging October 1, 1998 (World $895.00, America $795.00, Armillaries $395.00, Asia $395.00, Africa $395.00 and Europe $250.00). McLaughlin 135.

Nicolas de Fer Biography

Nicholas de Fer (1646-1720) was the son of a map seller, Antoine de Fer, and grew to be one of the most well-known mapmakers in France in the seventeenth century. He was apprenticed at twelve years old to Louis Spirinx, an engraver. When his father died in 1673, Nicholas helped his mother run the business until 1687, when he became the sole proprietor.

His earliest known work is a map of the Canal of Languedoc in 1669, while some of his earliest engravings are in the revised edition of Methode pour Apprendre Facilement la Geographie (1685). In 1697, he published his first world atlas. Perhaps his most famous map is his wall map of America, published in 1698, with its celebrated beaver scene (engraved by Hendrick van Loon, designed by Nicolas Guerard). After his death in 1720, the business passed to his sons-in-law, Guillaume Danet and Jacques-Francois Benard.