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Asian Continent – Copper engraving

Homann Heirs – 1744 (dated)

ASIA Secundum legitimas Projectionis Stereographicae regulas et juxta recentissimas observationes aeque et relationes explosis aliorum fabulosis designationibus et narrationibus adhibitis quoque veterum monumentis et recentiorum itinerariis descripta et in partes suas methodicas IX divisa a I. MATTH. HASIO M.P.P.O. nunc ex beate dejuncti subsidiis et M.S.C.tis designata a M. August Gott. Iohb. Boehmio. Impensis Homannianorum Heredum A 1744.

Striking and highly detailed fine unusual 1744 Homann Heirs copper engraved map of the Asian continent, including the East Indies. Extends from Europe and Africa eastward through Arabia and India to include the East Indies, Siberia, the Philippines, and partial New Guinea ( Nova Guniea ).
The superb detailing of China’s interior probably references the work of early Jesuit missionaries to this region. The Kamchatka peninsula has been updated from earlier Homann work to more accurately reflect its actual size. The region of Siberia remains quite primitive in conception and is clearly based on Russian survey work from the 1730s. In Japan, Hokkaido (Terra Eso, Yedso, Yesfo ) is wildly distended in form and attached to the Asian mainland.
The upper right quadrant features a decorated scale of miles. The lower left quadrant features an allegorical title cartouche depicting an Asian king enthroned and, curiously, what appears to be an American Indian female with a bow, an arrow, and feathered headdress.

This map was drawn by J.M. Haas and posthumously collected and edited by Gottlieb Boehm for inclusion in the 1752 Homann Heirs “Maior Atlas Scholasticus ex Triginta Sex Generalibus et Specialibus….”.

About the Cartographer
Johann Baptist Homann (1664-1724) was a leading German geographer and cartographer who founded in 1702 his own publishing house. Homann produced hundreds of maps and developed a distinctive style characterized by heavy detailed engraving, elaborate allegorical cartouche work, and vivid hand color. The Homann firm, due to the lower cost of printing in Germany, was able to undercut the dominant French and Dutch publishing houses while matching the diversity and quality of their output. By 1715 Homann’s rising star caught the attention of the Holy Roman Emperor Charles the VI, who appointed him Imperial Cartographer. In the same year he was also appointed a member of the Royal Academy of Sciences in Berlin.

Following Homann’s death in 1726, the management of the firm passed to his son Johann Christoph Homann (1703-1730). J. C. Homann, perhaps realizing that he would not long survive his father, stipulated in his will that the company would be inherited by his two head managers, Johann Georg Ebersberger and Johann Michael Franz, and that it would publish only under the name Homann Heirs. This designation, in various forms (Homannsche Heirs, Heritiers de Homann, Lat Homannianos Herod, Homannschen Erben, etc..) appears on maps from about 1731 onwards. The firm continued to publish maps in ever diminishing quantities until the death of its last owner, Christoph Franz Fembo in 1848.

Johann Matthias Haas (1684 – 1742) was a German mathematician, astronomer, and cartographer. Haas was born in Augsburg but is known to have held academic positions in Nuremburg, Leipzig and Wittenberg, where he was a professor of mathematics. He produced several maps for the Homann Heirs firm in addition to several publications of his own.


The map is professionally framed using high quality and acid free materials
H: 50 cm W: 57 cm (70 x 76 cm framed size)
H: 20” W: 22 ½” (27 ½ x 30” framed size)


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