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United States, by Jacques Nicolas Bellin. c. 1747

Jacques-Nicolas Bellin (1703-1772)

Jacques-Nicolas Bellin, a French geographer, was among the most important mapmakers of the eighteenth century. In 1721, at the age of 18, he was appointed hydrographer of the Ministry of the Navy following the French hydrographic office's creation and the Dépot of charts and plans of the Navy. Appointed hydrographic engineer in August 1741. Member of the Academy of the Navy and the Royal Society of London.

Over the course of a 50-year career, he drew the maps of several major works of his time such as Histoire et description générale de la Nouvelle-France de Charlevoix (1744); Histoire générale des voyages de l'Abbé Prévost (published between 1746 and 1759) ); Neptune François (1753), Hydrographie Françoise (1756-1765), and Petit Atlas Français (1763) - reissued as Petit Atlas Maritime (1765). He is the most copied cartographer of the 18th century.

His maps of Canada and the French territories of North America are of considerable value. This is all the more remarkable since, an archetype of the cabinet cartographer, Bellin never came to America. For his cartography of the St. Lawrence River, he entrusted handwritten maps to navigators to correct and enrich. With each return of these maps, he was updating his knowledge. Two basic needs drive its cartography of North America: to secure navigation on the St. Lawrence River and to claim for France the lands explored by the French in the Great Lakes region and along the Mississippi River.

Jacques-Nicolas Bellin died on March 21, 1772, in Versailles. In the burial certificate, he is described as "the first engineer of the navy and the deposit of plans, royal censor of the academy of navy and the royal society of London".

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Karte von Luisiana, dem Laufe des Mississipi und den Benachbarten Laendern.

€700  ($819 / £595)
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Item Number:  26795
Category:  Antique maps > America > North America
References: McCorkle - #744-1 (=French text edition).

Old, antique map of the Unites States, by Jacques Nicolas Bellin.

Date of the first edition: 1744
Date of this map: c. 1747
Date on map: 1744

Copper engraving, printed on paper.
Size (not including margins): 55 x 39.5cm (21.5 x 15.4 inches)
Verso: Blank
Condition: Excellent.
Condition Rating: A+
References: McCorkle, #744-1 (=French text edition).

From: Prevost d'Exiles. Allgemeine Historie der Reisen zu Wasser und Lande; oder Sammlung aller Reisebeschreibungen, welche bis itzo in verschiedene Sprachen von allen Völkern herausgegeben worden, ... Leipzig, Arkstee und Merkus, 1747-74.

This map covers the United States west of Rio Grande River. The information in the west includes the road from Mexico City to Santa Fe and the routes of St. Denis and De Soto though Texas. The map shows strategic forts and areas claimed by the French just prior to the French and Indian War. Incredible detail of settlements, Indian tribes, rivers, and trails.
Includes notes.

Jacques-Nicolas Bellin (1703-1772)

Jacques-Nicolas Bellin, a French geographer, was among the most important mapmakers of the eighteenth century. In 1721, at the age of 18, he was appointed hydrographer of the Ministry of the Navy following the French hydrographic office's creation and the Dépot of charts and plans of the Navy. Appointed hydrographic engineer in August 1741. Member of the Academy of the Navy and the Royal Society of London.

Over the course of a 50-year career, he drew the maps of several major works of his time such as Histoire et description générale de la Nouvelle-France de Charlevoix (1744); Histoire générale des voyages de l'Abbé Prévost (published between 1746 and 1759) ); Neptune François (1753), Hydrographie Françoise (1756-1765), and Petit Atlas Français (1763) - reissued as Petit Atlas Maritime (1765). He is the most copied cartographer of the 18th century.

His maps of Canada and the French territories of North America are of considerable value. This is all the more remarkable since, an archetype of the cabinet cartographer, Bellin never came to America. For his cartography of the St. Lawrence River, he entrusted handwritten maps to navigators to correct and enrich. With each return of these maps, he was updating his knowledge. Two basic needs drive its cartography of North America: to secure navigation on the St. Lawrence River and to claim for France the lands explored by the French in the Great Lakes region and along the Mississippi River.

Jacques-Nicolas Bellin died on March 21, 1772, in Versailles. In the burial certificate, he is described as "the first engineer of the navy and the deposit of plans, royal censor of the academy of navy and the royal society of London".