Finely Engraved Lafreri School Map of Menorca
Fine wide-margined example of this rare copy of Ferando Bertelli's map of Minorca.
Recorded by Novacco, Tooley and Meurer, this rare anonymous map of Menorca is known to appear in a pair with the map of Mallorca in several rare Lafreri atlases, but almost never on the market. While it resembles the Bertelli, the engraving quality is much more refined.
Bertelli's map of Menorca is one of the earliest separate printed maps of the island, if not the earliest. The map is oriented with south at the top. Curiously, the map is engraved in reverse, with 'Cittadella' on the east coast of the island, and 'P. Mangno' (Mahon) on the west.
While identified by the experts as anonymous, this map is one of a group of 16th Italian mapmakers often referred to as "Lafreri School," named for the Roman mapmaker and publisher Antoni Lafreri, who assembled composite atlases of maps published by himself and other Italian mapmakers and added his title page to some examples. Lafreri maps are often among the earliest obtainable modern maps of various regions of the world. While most maps were separately issued, some were bound in composite atlases, which increased the prospects of their survival until modern times.