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Fine example of Seutter's decorative map of Ireland.

The map is colored by regions and shows towns, roads, counties, rivers, lakes, castles, and more. Ireland is visible in its entirety, divided into its four provinces: Ulster in the north, Connacht in the west, Leinster in the east, and Munster in the south. Part of Galloway, the Isle of Man, and Cornwall are all also shown. The map includes two marvelous cartouches, coats of arms, and allegorical details.

The contrast between the two coats of arms is interesting. The one on the bottom left shows the Celtic Harp, a symbol of Ireland, and is framed by pastoral scenes, including shepherds with their flocks and fishermen. The other coat of arms is in the upper left. This is the coat of arms of the United Kingdom and it is framed by a much more regal and powerful scene, including the English lion and the Scottish unicorn. The balance of power is clearly evident; this leaves the impression of looking at a minor constituent kingdom rather than a nation among equals.

That being said, the attention to detail on the map is extensive. The many place names provided allow for a fascinating picture of how Ireland stood in the mid-18th century. Particularly interesting is the fact that the only religious institutions shown appear to be those of the Church of Ireland. Evidence from this comes from the archbishop seat shown at Armagh, which was only regularly occupied by the Primate of Ireland in the Church of England. The map was made during the Protestant Ascendancy, a period in which Catholics were increasingly persecuted and Protestants controlled almost all the power. Intriguingly, Dublin is not shown as being the seat of an archbishop, though it was at the time.

Condition Description
Engraving on 18th-century laid paper. Original hand-color in the geography. A rich, dark impression.
Matthaus Seutter Biography

Matthäus Seutter (1678-1757) was a prominent German mapmaker in the mid-eighteenth century. Initially apprenticed to a brewer, he trained as an engraver under Johann Baptist Homann in Nuremburg before setting up shop in his native Augsburg. In 1727 he was granted the title Imperial Geographer. His most famous work is Atlas Novus Sive Tabulae Geographicae, published in two volumes ca. 1730, although the majority of his maps are based on earlier work by other cartographers like the Homanns, Delisles, and de Fer. 

Alternative spellings: Matthias Seutter, Mathaus Seutter, Matthaeus Seutter, Mattheus Seutter