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First Italian Edition of “the most important map in American history” (Cumming)
Choice Original Condition in situ with Raynal’s Influential Text
330. [MAP]. [MITCHELL, Dr. John, cartographer (after) & Antonio Zatta, publisher]. RAYNAL, [Abbé Guillaume-Thomas-François]. Storia Dell’ America Settentrionale Del Signor Abate Raynal Continuata fino al presente, con Carte Geografiche rappresentanti il Teatro della Guerra Civile tra la Gran Bretagna, e le Colonie Unite. A SS. EE. Li Signori Riformatori Dello Studio Di Padova. Venice: Dalle Stampe di Antonio Zatta con Licenza de Superiori, e Privilegio, MDCCXXVIII . [i-vi] vii-xviii, 1-124, 1-6 pp. (printed in double columns), title with allegorical engraving of Neptune and Cybele by Zatta; second leaf with two vignettes: Cybele by Gioseppe Daniotto (see Bénézit III, p. 31) and initial letter illustrating putto examining a map and pointing to Cape Cod; vignette of Goddess of Wisdom by Zatta on p. x, tailpiece on p. 123 showing three putti announcing “Il Fine”; 15 double-page copper-engraved maps with original outline hand coloring and full color in cartouche (12 by Zatta after Mitchell’s 1755 Map of the British and French Dominions in North America). Folio (43 x 28.2 cm), original beige paper mottled in red and green over heavy paste paper, ivory paper spine label printed in black (Raynal Storia dell’ America Setten. Ven. 1778), original stitching and publisher’s blue silk bookmark. Other than minor chipping to spine and label, a finer copy could hardly be imagined. The separate maps are often found on the market, but pristine, as-issued copies of the entire work with text and maps and original binding are always to be preferred. Contemporary embossed armorial ex-libris on front free endpaper. Preserved in a handsome full dark brown folding box with raised bands, gilt lettering and tooling, suede lining (by Sangorski & Sutcliffe/Zaehnsdorf). Ex-Libris of Mark Babinski with provenance statement of Sotheby’s London, Lot 173, June 24, 1993.
Each of the double-page maps is on a sheet measuring 41.7 x 52 cm, heavy laid paper watermarked with the tré-lune mark of Venetian mills and countermarked with bird perched on initials PCG.
 [Illustrated title cartouche for map section, title at lower right] Le Colonie Unite dell’ America Settentrle. di Nuova Projezione Ass. Ee. Li Signori Riformatori dello Studio di Padova. Venezia 1778 Presso Antonio Zatta con Privilegio dell’ Eccellentissimo Senato. [map of Bermuda at left on unfurled scroll] Le Isole Bermude. Neat line to neat line: 42 x 31.4 cm. Map with original outline color, pictorial title in full original color. Large elaborate drawing of a coastal landscape with ships, huts, beaver, tropical bird, trees, flora and fauna. McCorkle, New England in Early Printed Maps 778.10 (citing the 12 sheets comprising the complete Mitchell map).Portinaro & Knirsch, The Cartography of North America, 1500-1800, Plate CXLIII.
 Il Canadá, Le Colonie Inglesi Con La Luigiana, e Florida. di nuova Projezione. Venezia 1778. Presso Antonio Zatta Con Privilegio dell’Eccmo Senato [below neat line at left] G. Zuliani inc. [above neat line at top] Nord, o Tramontana [along right neat line] Est, o Levante [below neat line at center] Sud, o Mezzodi [along left border] Ouest, o Ponente. Neat line to neat line: 32 x 44.4 cm. Map with outline color, landscape elements and flora and fauna around cartouche in full color. The map shows North America from Canada to Florida, including the Great Lakes, and to Louisiana and as far west as Galveston Bay, Texas. Located are colonies, settlements, and bodies of water. McCorkle, New England in Early Printed Maps 778.9.
 [Title above neat line] Il Paese de’ Selvaggi Outauacesi, e Kilistinesi Intorno al Lago Superiore. [inset at upper left] Supplemento alla Florida Orientale [top left above neat line] Fogl. I. Neat line to neat line: 35.6 x 42 cm. Original outline color. The large map shows Lake Superior and the surrounding area; the inset map in scroll format presents southern Florida and the Bahamas. Kershaw, Early Printed Maps of Canada #980. Portinaro & Knirsch, The Cartography of North America, 1500-1800, Plate CXLIV: “The somewhat distorted outline of southern Florida in the inset is in keeping with the general lack of British knowledge about this area.”
 [Title above neat line] La Parte Occidentale della Nuova Francia o Canada. [top left above neat line] Fogl. II. Neat line to neat line: 30.4 x 42 cm. Original outline color. Canada just north of the Great Lakes, part of present-day Ontario. Portinaro & Knirsch, The Cartography of North America, 1500-1800, Plate CXLV: “Part of the area of the Indians’ Six Nations.”
 [Title above neat line] Parte Orientale del Canadá, Nuova Scozia Settentrionale, e Parte di Labrador. [top left above neat line] Fogl. III. Neat line to neat line: 35 x 42 cm. Original outline color. Prince Edward Island and parts of Quebec and New Brunswick. Portinaro & Knirsch, The Cartography of North America, 1500-1800, Plate CXLVI.
 [Title above neat line] Il Paese de’ Selvaggi Outagamiani, Mascoutensi, Illinesi e Parte delle VI. Nazioni. [top left above neat line] Fogl. IV. Neat line to neat line: 31.7 x. 41.9 cm. Original outline color. Region including Illinois, Michigan, Wisconsin, west and southwest of Lake Michigan. Portinaro & Knirsch, The Cartography of North America, 1500-1800, Plate CXLVII. Located in what is now Missouri is “Miniere de Piobo” (of later fame due to Moses Austin’s mining venture there); at lower left is a notation for “Pratarie immense piene di Bufali.”
 [Title above neat line] La Pensilvania, la Nuova York, il Jersey Settentriole, con la Parte Occidentale del Connecticut, Massachussets-Bay e l’Irochesia. [top left above neat line] Fogl. V. Neat line to neat line: 31.4 x. 42 cm. Original outline color. Northeast U.S. from Lake Erie and Lake Ontario to Lake Champlain and western Connecticut, dense with cities and towns, roads, early borders and annotations for native tribes. Among the interesting towns located is “White Woman’s Town” in modern-day Ohio, so-named because of Indian captive Mary Harris, who had been removed to the area from Deerfield, Massachusetts, after being captured as a child in 1704. McCorkle, New England in Early Printed Maps 778.11. Portinaro & Knirsch, The Cartography of North America, 1500-1800, Plate CXLVIII (noting that Zatta updates Mitchell on details such as noting Burgoyne’s defeat at Saratoga).
 [Title above neat line] L’Acadia, le Provincie di Sagadahook e Main, la Nuova Hampshire, la Rhode Island, e Parte di Massachusset e Connecticut. [top left above neat line] Fogl. VI. Neat line to neat line: 31.5 x 41.5 cm. Original outline color. Shown is Nova Scotia and as far south as Massachusetts; major fishing banks from Nantucket to Sable Islands. Kershaw, Early Printed Maps of Canada #796. McCorkle, New England in Early Printed Maps 778.8. Portinaro & Knirsch, The Cartography of North America, 1500-1800, Plate CXLIX.
 [Title above neat line] Il Paese de’ Cherachesi, con la Parte Occidentale della Carolina Settentrionale, e della Virginia. [top left above neat line] Fogl. VII. Neat line to neat line: 31 x 42 cm. Original outline color. Central Mississippi and Ohio River Valleys showing the far western boundaries of the Carolinas, including the St. Louis area and parts of Illinois, Indiana, Kentucky and Tennessee. More native villages are shown than European settlements. Portinaro & Knirsch, The Cartography of North America, 1500-1800, Plate CL.
 [Title above neat line] Il Maryland, il Jersey Meridionale, la Delaware, e la Parte Orientale della Virginia, e Carolina Settentrionale. [top left above neat line] Fogl. VIII. Neat line to neat line: 31.6 x 42.3 cm. Original outline color. East coast of U.S. from Delaware to North Carolina. Portinaro & Knirsch, The Cartography of North America, 1500-1800, Plate CLI.
 [Title above neat line] La Giammaica. [top left above neat line] Fogl. IX. Neat line to neat line: 31.6 x 42.5 cm. Jamaica set on a decorative scroll, parishes outlined in original color.
 [Title above neat line] Luigiana Inglese, colla Parte Occidentale della Florida, della Giorgia, e Carolina Meridonale [sic]. [top left above neat line] Fogl. X. Neat line to neat line: 31.6 x 42 cm. Original outline color. Northwest coast of Florida to the mouth of the Mississippi River, including New Orleans, Natchez, forts, merchant routes, and many native areas. Portinaro & Knirsch, The Cartography of North America, 1500-1800, Plate CLII: “The sole advantage of Zatta’s copies over Mitchell’s original is legibility. Mitchell’s map measures 1016 x 1829 mm, and even to reproduce it on a double-page spread would be to sacrifice much important detail. Also, Zatta’s up-dated legends, with their references to the settlement of 1763 and events of the Revolutionary War, are of interest.”
 [Title above neat line] Parte Orientale della Florida, della Giorgia, e Carolina Meridionale. [top left above neat line] Fogl. XI. Neat line to neat line: 31.5 x 42 cm. Original outline color. Shown is the South Atlantic region encompassing parts of Florida, Georgia, and South Carolina, from Cape Fear to San Augustine. Portinaro & Knirsch, The Cartography of North America, 1500-1800, Plate CLIII: “This map, with its note about the British attack on Charleston in 1776, is the last in Zatta’s southeastern sequence.”
 [Title at lower right in image, graced with codfish drying on trees and on the ground] Le Isole di Terra Nuova e Capo Breton Di Nuova Projezione. Venezia 1778 con Privilegio del Eccmo Senato. [above neat line at top] Nord, o Tramontana [along right neat line] Est, o Levante [below neat line at center] Sud, o Mezzodi [along left border] Ouest, o Ponente. Neat line to neat line: 32 x 42 cm. Original outline color, full color in illustrations around title. Cape Breton Island and Newfoundland in Canada. Portinaro & Knirsch, The Cartography of North America, 1500-1800, Plate CLIV.
 [Title at top left, above a festoon of flora, a sheaf of arrows, and feathered headdress] La Baja D’Hudson Terra di Labrador e Groenlandia Con Le Isole Adiacenti di nuova Projezione. Venezia 1778, Presso Antonio Zatta Con Privilegio dell’ Eccmo Senato [below lower neat line at left] G. Giuliani inc. [below lower neat line at right] G. Pitteri scf. Neat line to neat line: 29.8 x 40 cm. Original outline color to boundaries, full color to festoon. Nova Scotia, Hudson Bay, Labrador, Newfoundland, and southern tip of Greenland with various tribes located, such as “Li Eskimesi.” Kershaw, Early Printed Maps of Canada #479.
First edition of this abbreviated translation of Books 15-18 of Raynal’s Histoire Philosophique et Politique des Établissements & du Commerce des Européens dans les deux Indies (Amsterdam, 1770 [probably 1772 or after; see Echeverria & Wilkie, The French Image of America 770/17]); the anonymous continuation covers the years 1773-1778. Echeverria & Wilkie 778/68. There appears to be some bibliographical uncertainty about the present work, going back to Sabin, whose source was an entry from a dealer’s catalogue for a similar work (68109). Alden et al, A Critical Bibliography of French Literature (2433) cite the original edition and comment in the note “There are many reprints, legal and pirated...and numerous translations.... All this testifies to the great popularity, in its own time, of a work which is now almost completely forgotten.” Clark, Old South I:292:22 (matching our copy in every detail). Sellers & Van Ee, Maps and Charts of North America and the West Indies 1750-1789 163. Some of the maps appeared in other publications, such as Zatta’s Atlante novissimo (see Phillips, Atlases 650, 651, etc.).
First Italian edition of Mitchell’s great 1755 map of North American. Many consider Mitchell’s map “the most important map in American history” (Cumming, The Southeast in Early Maps, p. 47; see also Schwartz & Ehrenberg, The Mapping of America, p. 164 & Plate 96; Tooley, The Mapping of America, p. 317; et al). Richard W. Stephenson, “Table for Identifying Variant Editions and Impressions of John Mitchell’s Map of the British and French Dominions in North America” in Walter W. Ristow (editor) in A la Carte, p. 113 (under Italian Editions, first Italian edition “b”). Rumsey 5007A & 5007.001-5007.016:
Because Mitchell’s map was immediately recognized as seminal, it was exceedingly popular. Events leading up to the American Revolution only increased that demand. During the midst of the colonists’ on-going struggle for liberation from England, Zatta published this condensed version of the liberal Raynal’s text on America accompanied by these elegant maps, which included some additional place names and information on early battles of the American Revolution.
Publisher Zatta’s introduction implies that he was more interested in the maps than in Raynal’s text, which he considers as a supplement to the maps. Raynal’s text reviews the fairly well-known and established facts about the history of North America, including explorations, conquests, and political developments. Some of this discussion is done with a critical eye, which, in the original attracted the attention of the authorities. The anonymous continuation basically reviews events in the military and political history of the on-going American Revolution. The second, entitled “Riflessioni generali,” reviews the events leading up to the Declaration of Independence, especially Britain’s problematic imposition of heavy taxes and the colonists’ strong reaction to them, concluding that imposing them was probably a mistake. “Explicit discussions of the American Revolution are to be found solely in post-Revolutionary editions of Raynal’s History, although the threat of colonial rebellion stalks the earliest editions” (Christopher Iannini, “‘The Itinerant Man’: Crèvecoeur’s Caribbean, Raynal’s Revolution, and the Fate of Atlantic Cosmopolitanism” in The William and Mary Quarterly, Third Series, Vol. 61, No. 2, April 2004, pp. 201-234). One chapter of Raynal’s text (“Di quali vantaggi godono gli abitanti delle Colonie Inglese dell’America Settentrionale”) discusses the history and positive features of each of the thirteen English colonies in North America. Also discussed are Hudson’s Bay, Canada, Jamaica, Bermuda, Florida, and Louisiana (the latter with a short account of LaSalle’s ill-fated colony in Texas, p. 54).
Raynal (1713-1796) was ordained a Jesuit priest but was soon dismissed from his post for reasons still unexplained, leading him to pursue a life of letters and society. Written with various co-authors, among whom was probably Diderot, his Histoire Philosophique was a tremendous best seller and caused the author to be so pursued by French authorities that he had to leave the country, although he was eventually allowed to return.
The maps of Venetian publisher Antonio Zatta (fl. 1750-1804) are noteworthy for their fine craftsmanship and high aesthetics. “He was probably the most important Italian map publisher of the late eighteenth century and is responsible for a large number of atlases and single maps of considerable aesthetic and scientific merit” (Portinaro & Knirsch, The Cartography of North America, 1500-1800, p. 319). Zatta was among the leaders in the eighteenth-century revival of fine printing in Italy. Zatta’s choice of the text of Raynal is not surprising—Anne Palms Chalmers describes Zatta as “a sardonic writer with the focus of a certain amount of political controversy” (“Venetian Book Design in the Eighteenth Century,” The Metropolitan Museum of Art Bulletin, New Series, Vol. 29, No. 5, January 1971, pp. 226-235). Chalmers describes Zatta’s printing and design as harmonious in composition with ornament unified by style, quality of line, and tone of printing. See also Tooley’s Dictionary of Mapmakers (revised edition), Vol. IV, p. 429.
Karpinski (Maps of Famous Cartographers Depicting North America, p. 57) provides a good overview of John Mitchell’s map and its successors, including the present Italian edition, concluding with a rather interesting theory:
Sold. Hammer: $8,000.00; Price Realized: $9,800.00.
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