Blaeu's The Grand Atlas

by Rizzoli

Hardcover, 1991



Rizzoli (1991), 224 pages


Superlatives tend to fail in describing Joan Blaeu's Atlas Maior--that being said, it stands as one of the most extravagant feats in the history of mapmaking. The original Latin edition, completed in 1665, was the largest and most expensive book to be published during the 17th century. Its 594 maps appearing across 11 volumes spanned Arctica, Africa, Asia, Europe, and America. Ambitious in scale and artistry, it is included in the Canon of Dutch History, an official survey of 50 individuals, creations, or events that chart the most important historical developments of the Netherlands. TASCHEN's meticulous reprint brings this luxurious Baroque wonder into the hands of modern readers. In an age of digitized cartography and global connectivity, it celebrates the steadfast beauty of quality printing and restores the wonder of an exploratory age, in which Blaeu's native Amsterdam was a center of international trade and discovery. True to TASCHEN's optimum reproduction standards, this edition is based on the Austrian National Library's complete colored and gold-heightened copy of Atlas Maior, assuring the finest detail and quality. University of Amsterdam's Peter van der Krogt introduces the historical and cultural significance of the atlas while providing detailed descriptions for individual maps, revealing the full scale and ambition of Blaeu's masterwork.… (more)

User reviews

LibraryThing member ohjanet
The most amazing, beautiful book I own. I think I'll build a ship and sail the seas guided only by these magical maps. Unfortunately I will probably sink the ship and doom this lovely text to a moldy, pulpy future. Too sad.
LibraryThing member Mapguy314
Another Taschen production by way of Barnes and Noble. This is a beautiful book. Not knowing what was in the original, I don't know if it is complete, but there is a chapter which talks about the efforts to publish the original in 1665. My only complaint is that the text is so small I need a
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magnifying glass to read it. More later.
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Original language


Original publication date

2006 (Barnes & Noble Books)

Physical description

224 p.; 11.5 inches


0847813002 / 9780847813001

Other editions

Atlas Maior by Joan Blaeu (Hardcover)
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