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Bowen's Map of the Atlantic from the Navigantium

SKU: 9591

Bowen's Map of the Atlantic from the Navigantium

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  • Emanuel Bowen
  • Welsh Pride

    Bowen dutifully tracks Columbus’s course across the Atlantic in this map, but may have been swayed by his own Welsh roots to include a note beneath the cartouche referring to the ‘great probability’ that the Welsh Prince Madoc landed in Florida in the 12th century; the Madoc legend, with associated conjectures that some native American tribes had Welsh origins, persisted well into the 19th century.

    The mapmaker

    Born in Wales c. 1693, Emanuel Bowen was an important British cartographer, engraver to both George II and Louis XV. He produced some of the most decorative eighteenth century English maps. In spite of his royal appointments, in 1767 he died in poverty: "reduced through family extravagances, and almost blind through age" (Gough). He was a Freemason and a Baptist and was buried at Bunhill Fields, a London cemetery for dissenters.

    Condition & Materials 

    Copper engraving, 36.5 x 45.5 cm, modern hand colour, blank verso. The map was published in John Harris' ‘Navigantium’, a mid 18th century English compilation of ‘above 600 of the most authentic’ accounts of voyages and travels.