Fine dark impression of Jaillot's striking large format map of North America, showing California as an Island, based upon Sanson's landmark map of 1669.
The map also shows the Great Lakes opened up on the west end, as was the norm in the earlier examples (although curiously enough the open ended Lakes also show up in some later examples of the map). The source of the Mississippi is pushed far west of its true location. The east coast of North America is based upon Sanson, although the projection of California is his second projection, differing from the 1656.
The present example is the third state of the map. The sites can be identified as follows:
- State 1: Dated 1692
- State 2: Dated 1696
- State 3: Date removed. Pierre Mortier imprint added in the scale of miles
- State 4: Imprint changed to Covens & Mortier
Striking full color example.
Alexis-Hubert Jaillot (ca. 1632-1712) was one of the most important French cartographers of the seventeenth century. Jaillot traveled to Paris with his brother, Simon, in 1657, hoping to take advantage of Louis XIV's call to the artists and scientists of France to settle and work in Paris. Originally a sculptor, he married the daughter of Nicholas Berey, Jeanne Berey, in 1664, and went into partnership with Nicholas Sanson's sons. Beginning in 1669, he re-engraved and often enlarged many of Sanson's maps, filling in the gap left by the destruction of the Blaeu's printing establishment in 1672.
Pierre, or Pieter, Mortier (1661-1711) was a Dutch engraver, son of a French refugee. He was born in Leiden. In 1690 he was granted a privilege to publish French maps in Dutch lands. In 1693 he released the first and accompanying volume of the Neptune Francois. The third followed in 1700. His son, Cornelis (1699-1783), would partner with Johannes Covens I, creating one of the most important map publishing companies of the eighteenth century.