1691 Coronelli - Mare del sud detto altrimenti mare Pacifico [California as an Island]

Splendid 1691 map of the Pacific Ocean with speculative geography and California as an island


Mare Del Sud detto altrimenti Mare Pacifico

Map maker:

Vincenzo Coronelli; Atlante Veneto

Place and Year:

Venice, 1691


46 x 61 cm (18 x 24 in)


Copperplate engraving



Condition Rating:


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A lovely fusion of art and science, this map of the Pacific Ocean features the partially-known islands off the coast of Asia as well as the coastline of the Americas.

California is shown as an island with numerous place-names along the coasts and along the Mer Vermeio. Isola del Giapone, or Japan, is shown only 50 degrees from the California coast. The imaginary island of Terra de Iesso (Hokkaido) is shown as a large coastline northeast of Japan.

A portion of the coastline of New Zealand is shown, indicating it as a very large land mass, and hinting that it may be part of the great Southern Continent. A little of Tasmania is shown as Terra D'Antonio Diemens and a partial coastline of Australia is shown blending into New Guinea.

The map is adorned with a cartouche featuring aquatic putti surrounding a large shell filled with pearls and coral.

Vincenzo Coronelli was a Franciscan priest and renowned mathematician and cartographer. He was appointed official Cosmographer to the Venetian Republic in 1685 and founded the world's earliest geographic society, L'Accademia Cosmografica degli Argonauti.


Excellent and bright.




Clancy, The mapping of Terra Australis, 6.20. McLaughlin, Glen, The Mapping of California as an Island, 104. Wagner, H.R., Cartography of the northwest coast of America, Vol II,  436. Tooley, R.V., Mapping of Australia, 350. Burden, P., The Mapping of North America II: A list of printed maps 1671-1700, 680.