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Description

Rare separately published map of Italy, published in Amsterdam by Jansson.

At top and bottom are views of the cities of Rome, Naples, Venice, Florence, Genova, Verona, Parma, Siena, Pozzuoli and Velletri.

The side panels show nobles and commoners of Rome, Naples, Venice, Florence, Milan and Genoa. Also included in the surrounding panels are several coats of arms and images of two volcanic attractions: Solfatara and Grotto del Cane.

The map is further embellished with sailing ships, sea monsters, and an allegorical title cartouche, featuring a queen representing Italia, river gods, and Romulus and Remus being suckled by a she-wolf. A dedication to the Venetian Republic appears below the title cartouche.

This map first appeared in Jansson's Atlantis Maioris Appendix in 1630, with the date "1628" in the title cartouche, and then again in two editions of his Newer Atlas in 1638 and 1642. This map must have also been issued separately, as this example bears the date of "1659" in the title cartouche. Another edition of this map was published in 1631 and 1635 with a different title (Italia Nuovamente Piu Perfetta Che Mai per Inanzi Posta in Luce, Scolpita et con le Suoi Figure Uivamente Rappresentate), dated 1617, and with Jodocus Hondius' imprint rather than Jansson's.

The Hondius and Jansson editions are very similar and it is unclear which was published first, although Van der Krogt lists the Jansson edition first within his carto-bibliography, Koeman's Atlantes Neerlandici.

Condition Description
Light soiling, and a couple of tiny worm holes. Expert restoration to centerfold separation, with some facsimile. A 1/2" tall strip extending along the bottom of the lower vignettes has been expertly replaced with the image in facsimile. The map has been remargined at both sides and at bottom. The repairs and facsimile work are nearly invisible, resulting in a beautiful presentation.
Jan Jansson Biography

Jan Janssonius (also known as Johann or Jan Jansson or Janszoon) (1588-1664) was a renowned geographer and publisher of the seventeenth century, when the Dutch dominated map publishing in Europe. Born in Arnhem, Jan was first exposed to the trade via his father, who was also a bookseller and publisher. In 1612, Jan married the daughter of Jodocus Hondius, who was also a prominent mapmaker and seller. Jonssonius’ first maps date from 1616.

In the 1630s, Janssonius worked with his brother-in-law, Henricus Hondius. Their most successful venture was to reissue the Mercator-Hondius atlas. Jodocus Hondius had acquired the plates to the Mercator atlas, first published in 1595, and added 36 additional maps. After Hondius died in 1612, Henricus took over publication; Janssonius joined the venture in 1633. Eventually, the atlas was renamed the Atlas Novus and then the Atlas Major, by which time it had expanded to eleven volumes. Janssonius is also well known for his volume of English county maps, published in 1646.

Janssonius died in Amsterdam in 1664. His son-in-law, Johannes van Waesbergen, took over his business. Eventually, many of Janssonius’ plates were sold to Gerard Valck and Pieter Schenk, who added their names and continued to reissue the maps.