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Description

Nice old color example of the rare Price-Willdey double hemisphere world map, first published in 1713 in London.

Fascinating double hemisphere map of the world, oriented with London at the center of Eastern Hemisphere and its antipode at the center of the Western Hemipshere.

The map shows California as a very large island, with all regions to the north marked 'parts unknown.' Iceland appears in the immediate proximity of Greenland. The western half of 'New Holland' is shown, along with the known coastline of Tasmania. The map is also one of the earliest maps to attempt to depict the wind directions at sea, with arrows and hachuring depicting wind directions and various notes around the world noting "calms and tornado" (in the Atlantic), Variable winds (blank areas of the sea in several places), and Shifting Winds (northwest of Australia). In the Indian Ocean, the map shows the monsoon trade winds, with notes as to the direction of the winds on a monthly basis.

The map is richly adorned across the top with allegorical images of the 4 continents as women and a decorative cartouche, surrounded by a different group of 4 allegorical images of women representing the 4 continents.

At the bottom, maps of the Sun (by Kircher) and the Moon (by Cassini) are shown, along with an array of instruments and trade goods pictured, made by Willdey, ranging from globes and microscopes to snuff boxes, watches and spectacles.

The map is dedicated "To his Grace Charles Duke of Shrewsbury Lord Chamberlain of the Household, and one of the Lord of Her Majtis most Honble Privy council Knight of the Garter, &c."

Willdey operated "the Great Toy Shop next to the Dog Tavern in Ludgate Street." While it has been suggested that Willdey simply reissued maps by Senex, Overton and several other map makers of the period, it is clear that this map is no mere re-issue. Willdey's maps are works of art, which includes finely engraved embellishments and a title cartouche, as well as an entertaining advertisement for his Great Toy Store.

This is the second state of the map, with prior state dated 1713. The map would later be sold to Thomas Jefferys, who would re-issued the map without the advertising at the bottom.

Condition Description
Old Color. Several minor marginal tears and one fold split, just entering printed image, expertly repaired on verso.
Charles Price Biography

Charles Price (1679?-1733) was an engraver, instrument maker, and mapseller.

Price had been apprenticed to John Seller, famous mapmaker and father to Charles’ business partner, Jeremiah. In fact, Jeremiah and Charles were made free of the Merchant Taylors Guild on the same day, September 1, 1703. The two were already working together by then.

After breaking off with Seller, Price worked with John Senex (1705-10) and George Wildey (1710-13). He was still working in the 1720s, but was in Fleet Prison in 1731 for debt and died two years later.

He is known to have published in 1732  his Atlas Maritimus or, a new Sea Atlas . . .  This work contains maps dated 1728 and 1731.  We locate at single example (Bancroft Library - 30 maps) and we acquired an example in 2018 (25 maps).  It is quite likely that the work was an unfinished composite, as a number of the maps have blank spaces in the titles, in anticipation of dedicatees that were apparently never obtained.  The atlas was known to have been started, but not completed, as noted by Tony Campbell in the British Library Journal, recording the acquisition by the British Library of an untitled collection of charts by Price:

Price, Charles. [A set of English charts of the coasts of the British Isles and Europe, together with Hispaniola, engraved by Charles Price.] London: Charles Price , IV.1730].

Twenty-one charts, 50 cm.

An unrecorded collection without title-page, with a note on one chart announcing the author's intention of publishing 'a Compleat Sea Atlas', to remedy 'the Great want of a good sett of Sea Charts now extant in Great Britain (excepting for our own Coasts)'. The project proceeded no further.

By 1731 Price had to sell off his charts cheaply, and he ended the year in the Fleet Prison. Many of the charts are based on those of Greenville Collins and most are dated 1729 or 1730.

The named collaborators were teachers of mathematics, or, like Price, mathematical instrument makers.

Maps C.8.b.i