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Description

Fine old color example of this decorative sea chart of the Northwest African Coastline, from the Straits of Gibraltar to the Gambia River, published by Frederick De Wit. 

The chart is oriented with east at the top, with the Canary Islands (Fuerteventura, Lanzarote, Tenerife, Gran Canaria, La Gomera and La Palma), Madeira, Cape Verde and the Azores (Faial, Pico, Graciosa, Terceira, Santa Maria, Formigas, São Miguel), bottom left Flores.

The chart is embellished with a decorative cartouche, multiple sailing ships, loxodromes and a compass rose. 

Frederick De Wit Biography

De Wit (1629 ca.-1706) was a mapmaker and mapseller who was born in Gouda but who worked and died in Amsterdam. He moved to the city in 1648, where he opened a printing operation under the name of The Three Crabs; later, he changed the name of his shop to The White Chart. From the 1660s onward, he published atlases with a variety of maps; he is best known for these atlases and his Dutch town maps. After Frederik’s death in 1706, his wife Maria ran the shop for four years before selling it. Their son, Franciscus, was a stockfish merchant and had no interest in the map shop. At the auction to liquidate the de Wit stock, most of the plates went to Pieter Mortier, whose firm eventually became Covens & Mortier, one of the biggest cartography houses of the eighteenth century.