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Pieter Goos:  Pas-Caart van Guinea en de Custen daer aen gelegen Van Cabo verde tot Cabo de Bona Esperanca

Maps of West Africa

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Title: Pas-Caart van Guinea en de Custen daer aen gelegen Van Cabo verde tot Cabo de Bona Esperanca

Map Maker: Pieter Goos

Place / Date: Amsterdam / 1650 ca

Coloring: Uncolored

Size: 21 x 17 inches

Condition: VG+

Price: $675.00

Inventory ID: 46931


A rare sea chart from one of the great nautical atlases of the Dutch Golden Age of cartography: De Zee-Atlas Ofte Water-Weereld.

The map captures the west African coast from the Gambia River in the north (here called R. Portugues) to roughly Cape St. Francis in South Africa. The African kingdoms or regions of Mandinga, Melli, Melegette, Greincust, Quaquaas, Goutcust, Benin, Gabon, Loango, Angola, Mataman, and Cimbebas are labelled.  The mouth of the Congo River is shown as a wide and open body of water with scattered islands, overall much larger than the actual width of the river.

Although we would not expect to see great detail of Africa’s interior topography on a sea chart, the map is reflective of a long era in which the inland features of the continent had not been reliably reported to European cartographers.

The information on this map was invaluable to the Dutch East India trade, as it informed the journeys of their ships to and from the East Indies. The ships mostly stayed well away from the coast until reaching the Cape Colony or the Netherlands on the return journey, but nonetheless it was important information in the the event that a landing was required.

Pieter Goos (1616-1675) was an important Dutch mapmaker of the Golden Age -- his particular specialty was sea charts and atlases, such as the present map. Goos had inherited the business from his father Abraham Goos (1590-1643), who had excelled in the field in the first half of the 17th century.

References: Koeman, C. (Atlantes) IV, p.197, no.23.

Related Categories:
Maps of South Africa
Maps of West Africa