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Description

The First Depiction of the Hendrik Brouwer Expedition of 1643, which determined that Staten Landt was not part of the Great Unknown Southern Continent.

Unrecorded 4-sheet World map, by Christopher Tassin and Nicolas Berey, describing for the first time the discoveries of the Hendrik Brouwer Expedition of 1643.

The Tassin-Berey wall map of the World is based upon the Jodocus Hondius and Henricus Hondius 4 sheet World map of 1627, for which only 2 of the 4 sheets are known to have survived. However, there are some fascinating modifications to the Hondius model, most notably an unusal depiction of the Verazano / Virginia Sea (Mare Septentrionale America), which would seem to draw upon Pieter Verbiest's map of 1630 (Shirley 338) and the 1611 / 1634 Jodocus Hondius World Map (Shirley 273). Shirley notes:

Hondius has used this occasion to expound current theories postulating a vast inland sea west of present day Virginia. An ocean coastline is marked on the map, with a fully rigged ship, and inscriptions give accounts of this sea based upon native, British and Spanish reports.

Until the discovery of this example of the Tassin-Berey map in 2012, the map was known in 2 later states, a 1650 example by Nicolas Berey and a 1668 example by Hubert Jaillot. While Shirley opined that an earlier state of the map existed, it was not until 2012 when this present example was located that the exact publication date of 1644 was then known.

The basic cartographic features of the map can be traced to Blaeu's world map of 1605, which was later reissued by Jodocus Hondius Jr. in 1624. Korea is depicted as an island and California is firmly attached to North America in the Plancius-Hondius style. To the eastern hemisphere, 'Beach' is prominently named to the northern most promontory of 'Terra Australis Incognita'. Also inscribed along the promontory are 'Maletur Reg.', and 'Lunach', a legacy of the chronicles of the thirteenth century traveler Marco Polo. The depiction of America, however, belongs to the more advanced work in Hondius' map of 1627, referenced above (Shirley 319).

Jacob Le Maire and Willem Schouten's voyage of 1616-18 is mentioned, with the Straits of Le Maire's between Tierra del Feugo and Staten Island named, as are the Tonga Islands in the Pacific discovered by Le Maire; his name also appears on part of New Guinea.

It is in the French text placed below the coastline of the western 'Terra Australis' where the most significant contemporary information appears, one of the earliest cartographic references to the final major discovery concerning navigation of the southern tip of South America, which began with the discovery of the Straits of Magellan and the Straits of Le Maire. The text describes Hendrik Brouwer's discoveries in the extreme southern latitudes of the Pacific in transit from the Dutch settlements in Brazil to Chile in 1643.

Hendrik Brouwer

Hendrik Brouwer (1581-1643) was a Dutch explorer, admiral and colonial administrator in Japan and the Dutch East Indies. He first sailed to the East Indies for the Dutch East India Company (VOC) in 1606. In 1610, he led an expedition of three ships to the East Indies. On this trip he devised the Brouwer Route, a route from South Africa to Java that reduced voyage duration from a year to about 6 months, by taking advantage of the strong westerly winds in the Roaring Forties (the latitudes between 40° and 50° south). Prior to Brouwer, the Dutch had followed a route pioneered by the Portuguese via the coast of Africa, Mauritius and Ceylon. By 1617, the VOC required all their ships to take the Brouwer route.

After his arrival in 1611 in the East Indies, he was sent to Japan to replace Jacques Specx temporarily, as opperhoofd, at Dejima, from August 28, 1612, to August 6, 1614. During that time he made a visit to the Japanese court at Edo. In 1613 he made a trip to Siam that laid the foundation for the Dutch trade with Siam.

Early in 1632, he was part of a delegation sent to London to solve trade disagreements between the English and Dutch East India companies. Afterwards he left for the Indies, and on April 18, 1632, he was appointed Governor-General of the East Indies, again following Jacques Specx, a position which he held until January 1, 1636. Anthony van Diemen was his assistant during this entire period, and many of the Dutch explorations into the Pacific carried out under Van Diemen's command were suggested in writing, by Brouwer, before he left.

In 1642, the VOC joined the Dutch West Indies Company in organizing an expedition to Chile to establish a base for trading gold at the abandoned ruins of Valdivia. The fleet sailed from Dutch Brazil where John Maurice of Nassau provided them with supplies. While rounding Cape Horn, the expedition established that Staten Island was not part of the unknown Southern land. After landing on Chiloe Island, Brouwer made a pact with the Mapuche (then known as the Araucanians), to aid in establishing a resettlement at Valdivia. However, on August 7, 1643, Hendrik died, and was succeeded by his vice-admiral Elias Herckman, who landed at the ruins of Valdivia on August 24. Brouwer was buried in the new settlement, which Herckman named Brouwershaven, after him. Herckman and his men occupied the location only until October 28, 1643. Having been told that the Dutch had plans to return to the location, the Spanish viceroy in Peru sent 1000 men in twenty ships (and 2000 men by land, who never made it) in 1644, to resettle Valdivia and fortify it. The Spanish soldiers in the new garrison disinterred and burned Brouwer's body.

The Map

Although the map does not include the cartographic illustration of this information, the map must be seen as the first map to record his voyage and discoveries. It remains to be discovered how the information from the Dutch discoveries in the Southern Hemisphere first came to be disclosed on a printed map by a French mapmaker.

The other fascinating feature of the map is the inclusion of the "Mare Septrionale America", a representation of Verazano's Virginia Sea. Tassin's incorporation of this sea suggests that he was also looking to Jodocus Hondius' wall map of 1611 (Shirley 273), for cartographic details.

The map bears a dedication to, and coats-of-arms of, Henri-Auguste de Loménie, comte de Brienne, who was secretary of state for the French navy from 1615-1643, and from 1643-1663, was secretary of state for foreign affairs.

While the map is dated 1644, it can only be left to speculation as to whether this is the first printing of the map. In 1644, Christoper Tassin sold his inventory of plates (possibly including this set of 4 plates) and his paper stock, to Berey. The 6 miniature maps at the bottom of the main map first appeared in miniature atlases by Tassin dating as early as 1634. However, it seems unlikely that the map was engraved prior to late 1643 or early 1644, as the inclusion of the lengthy note regarding the discoveries on the southern hemisphere of the Hendrick Brouwer led Dutch VOC expedition of 1643, likely establishes that the map was first engraved in 1644. Brouwer died during the expedition on August 7, 1643 and the expedition members occupied a small settlement in Chile until October 28, 1643, at which time they returned to Europe. It seems unlikely that the details of the expedition could have been known to Tassin prior to 1644. One reasonable conclusion is that the map was spurred by the news of the Brouwer discoveries and engraving of the plate was in progress at the time of the sale of Tassin's plates to Berey, who credits Tassin as the author of "an enlarged and improved map" in the map's title.

The map's outer decoration consists of depictions of the four elements, fire, air, water, and earth to the four corners; and the garden of Eden and the last judgment, to the upper and lower centre respectively.

The map was later reissued by Berey, in 1650, without Tassin's Latin title but with 'Staten lant' correctly depicted; and again by Hubert Jaillot in 1668.

A fascinating French World map, illustrating one of the last great discoveries regarding the lands south of Tierra del Fuego and the beginning of the end of the "Terra Australis."

Condition Description
4 sheet map joined. Sheets recently cleaned and flattened, with minor repairs and restoration.