20th Anniversary 2006 Catalog, William R. Talbot Fine Art, Antique Maps & Prints Home


2006 Catalog > Guillaume Delisle, Carte du Mexique et de la Floride

Powered by Zoomify

An Early Edition of Delisle’s Signature Map of North America

4. Guillaume Delisle. “Carte du Mexique et de la Floride des Terres Angloises et des Isles Antilles du Cours et des Environs de la Riviere de Mississippi. . . . A Paris Chéz l’Auteur sur le Quai de l’Horloge Privilege du Roy por 20 ans. 1703” (Paris: 1708 [1703]). First edition, second state. Copperplate engraving, with nice original outline hand color. 18 1/2 x 25 1/4" at neat line. Frame size: 24 1/4 x 30 3/4". Top margin is trimmed just beyond the plate mark; stabilized split at bottom centerfold; old accretion at center right. A fine early state of this influential map by one of the most highly esteemed and prominent French geographers of the eighteenth century. Handsome archival presentation in gold-toned frame.

Price: SOLD.

One of the three great maps of regional North America conceived by Delisle during the first quarter of the eighteenth century, the present map identifies the colonial affiliations that defined the destiny of North America by the end of the century. The map covers the area from the Great Lakes to New Mexico, extends southward as far as Panama and Venezuela, and includes the West Indies. As much detail as was available appears, including locations of Indian tribes and villages and French and English forts. The map correctly shows the Great Lakes region, the English settlements along the East Coast, and perhaps most importantly, the early Spanish and Indian settlements in what are now Texas and New Mexico. Delisle was dependent on Spanish sources for his information about the region, and the map reflects the scarcity of reliable information available at the time. This 1708 edition, the second, was issued by Delisle himself with only very slight changes to the map and a change of address to Quai de Horloge in the cartouche. After 1708, Delisle probably sold the rights for a new engraving, and the map was reissued from a new plate in 1722.

Refs.: Cumming, The Southeast in Early Maps, no. 137, pl. 43; Martin and Martin, Maps of Texas and the Southwest, plate 14, p. 93, color plate V; Tooley, French Mapping of the Americas, no. 50; Wagner, Cartography of the Northwest Coast, 474; Wheat, Mapping the Transmississippi West, vol. I, no. 84, pp. 58–59.

Back to Main Page