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Bellin Illustrates The Russian Discoveries In The Pacific Northwest

Fine example of Bellin's map of the Northwest part of America and Northeast part of Asia, from Bellin's Petit Atlas Maritime.

The map illustrates the discoveries made by the Russian explorations in 1734-44 during the Great Northern Expedition led by Vitus Bering, drawn primarily from Gerhard Friedrich Muller's maps of 1754 and1758, but augmented with some later Russian sources and non-Russian information.

The map includes extensive notes regarding early explorers along the Northwest Coast, including Sir Francis Drake, Admiral Font, Juan de La Fuca, Martin Aguilar and others.

The map also notes the Russian Discoveries in the Arctic from 1648 and the routes of the more contemporary Russian Explorers in the region.

Includes an extensive note on the supposed discoveries of the Spanish Admiral, Bartolomeo de Fuente.

Jacques Nicolas Bellin Biography

Jacques-Nicolas Bellin (1703-1772) was among the most important mapmakers of the eighteenth century. In 1721, at age 18, he was appointed hydrographer (chief cartographer) to the French Navy. In August 1741, he became the first Ingénieur de la Marine of the Depot des cartes et plans de la Marine (the French Hydrographic Office) and was named Official Hydrographer of the French King.

During his term as Official Hydrographer, the Depot was the single most active center for the production of sea charts and maps, including a large folio format sea-chart of France, the Neptune Francois. He also produced a number of sea-atlases of the world, e.g., the Atlas Maritime and the Hydrographie Francaise. These gained fame, distinction, and respect all over Europe and were republished throughout the 18th and even in the succeeding century.

Bellin also came out with smaller format maps such as the 1764 Petit Atlas Maritime, containing 580 finely detailed charts. He also contributed many of the maps for Bellin and contributed a number of maps to the 15-volume Histoire Generale des Voyages of Antoine François Prévost or simply known l'Abbe Prevost.

Bellin set a very high standard of workmanship and accuracy, thus gaining for France a leading role in European cartography and geography. Many of his maps were copied by other mapmakers of Europe.