A rare separately published map of Asia, published by Michel van Lochom in Paris in 1640. The map is similar to versions published by Tavernier and Bertius, though the cartouche and dedication are different.
The map shows a detailed and extensive Asia. Major features, cities, rivers, and borders are all shown. In addition, the map fills empty spaces with drawings such as elephants, sea monsters, and ships. Annotations of varying importance are included, such as noting an island where Martin Alfonso de Sousa wintered before passing to India.
Japan is shown as primarily constituted of an oversized east-west island. The Korean peninsula is long and narrow. India goes far to the north, while the Caspian Sea is widened east-west. Part of North America is shown. The islands of the Indian Ocean are exaggerated in quantity. Overall, this is a rare and interesting early map showing all of Asia with attractive detail.
This map is dedicated to Pierre Petit, a minor official under Louis XIII and XIV, geographer, and member of the elite Parisian intelligentsia during the enlightenment. Van Lochem proclaims himself Petit's humble servant, though evidence outside of this connection is lacking outside of this cartouche. Van Lochem originated from Antwerp and moved to Paris by 1624. There is some evidence he may have collaborated with Bertius, the original creator of this map.
The map is rare on the market, especially in such fine condition.
Melchior Tavernier was a member of a large family involved in the publishing trade in Paris in the early years of the seventeenth century. Early in his career, he apparently collaborated with Henricus Hondius, as at least one of his early maps references Tavernier as the seller of a map engraved in Amsterdam, by Hondius. He is probably best known for his publication of a map of the Post Roads of France, which was copied many times until the end of the century. He also issued an atlas under the same title as J. le Clerc's Theatre Geographique, using many of Le Clerc's maps, but incorporating others from different sources. He published composite atlases and also published works for other cartographers, including N. Sanson, N. Tassin, and P. Bertius. He is not to be confused with his nephew of the same name (1594-1665), who also engraved maps for Nicolas Sanson.
Petrus Bertius was a Flemish historian, theologian, geographer, and cartographer. Known in Dutch as Peter de Bert, Bertius was born in Beveren. His father was a Protestant preacher and his family fled to London around 1568. The young Bertius only returned to the Low Countries in 1577, to attend the University of Leiden. A bright pupil, Bertius worked as a tutor and was named subregent of the Leiden Statencollege in 1593. He ascended to the position of regent in 1606, upon the death of the former regent, who was also Bertius’ father-in-law. However, due to his radical religious views, he eventually lost his teaching position and was forbidden from offering private lessons.
His brothers-in-law were Jodocus Hondius and Pieter van den Keere, who were both prominent cartographers. Bertius began his own cartographic publishing in 1600 when he released a Latin edition of Barent Langenes’ miniature atlas Caert Thresoor (1598). He published another miniature atlas that first appeared in 1616.
By 1618, Bertius was named cosmographer to Louis XIII. He converted to Catholicism and took up a position as professor of rhetoric at the Collège de Boncourt (University of Paris). In 1622, Louis XIII created a chart of mathematics specifically for Bertius and named him his royal historian. He died in Paris in 1629.