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Description

Rare variant of a fine 17th Century sea chart of Denmark's 'Great Belt', with Jutland, Funen Zealand and parts of Holstein and surround islands, published by Pieter Goos.

This attractive sea chart is a fine example of Dutch Baroque maritime cartography and it depicts an area that was then (as now) especially important to shipping. Running thorugh the center of the map is 'Great Belt', or Storebaelt, the wide strait which separates the Danish islands of Funen and Zealand. Along with the Oresund, which runs between Copenhagen and Southern Sweden, it is the main artery connecting the North and Batlic Seas. While these waters hosted a great deal of traffic, they were known to be especially treacherous, due to shoals, changeable weather and strong currents, making such a chart a vital aid. In particular, this chart would have been useful for merchants who imported vast amounts of timber out of the Baltic region. The chart would also have had a military utility, as Denmark and its arch-rival Sweden were often at war, while the Dutch were close allies of the Danes. Overall, such a chart would have been used by mariners from all European nations, due to the utter Dutch dominance of the printing industry at the time.

The important ports of Odense, Svendborg and Nyborg, are labelled on Funen, while the key harbour of Aarhus is located along the northeastern shore of the peninsula of Jutland. Further south are the ports of Flensborg, Lubeck and Rostock, all now a part of Germany. Many of the smaller towns, including those located on the small islands such as Lolland and Falster, were vibrant trading communities.

Pieter Goos (1616-1675) was a leading Duch chartmaker who was known for his progressive sources and the high artisitic quality of his works. He published many charts separately but is perhaps best known for his Atlas ofte Water-Weereld (1666), hailed as a masterpiece of maritime cartography.

The present example would seem to be a rare variant, with an extra note at the end of the title. While we note other examples of the map (given the date 1664), we were unable to locate an example of this edition, with the variant title and gradient lines added to the two, with the rhumb lines running due north and south.

Condition Description
Trimmed to neatline at upper margin.
Pieter Goos Biography

Pieter Goos (ca. 1616-1675) was a Dutch map and chart maker, whose father Abraham Goos (approx. 1590-1643) had already published numerous globes, land and sea maps together with Jodocus Hondius and Johannes Janssonius in Antwerp.

Pieter Goos gained recognition due to the publication of sea charts. He bought the copperplates of the famous guide book for sailors, De Lichtende Columne ofte Zeespiegel (Amsterdam 1644, 1649, 1650), from Anthonie Jacobsz.  Goos published his own editions of this work in various languages, while adding his own maps. In 1666, he published his  De Zee-Atlas ofte Water-Weereld, which is considered one of the best sea atlases of its time.  Goos' sea charts came to dominate the Dutch market until the 1680s, when the Van Keulen family began to come to prominence.