Leen Helmink Antique Maps

Antique map of Scandinavia by Doncker

Stock number: 18905

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Hendrick Doncker (biography)


Pascaart van de Zee-custen van Ruslant, Laplant, Finmarcken, Spitsbergen en Novazemla

First Published

Amsterdam, 1686

This Edition



43 x 53.5 cms




Rare sea chart of Scandinavia, Northern Russia, Spitsbergen and Nova Zemla by Hendrick Doncker. These waters were essential for whaling, fishing and for the new profitable sea routes that the English and the Dutch had opened with Russia, around the North Cape, to the trading posts of Archangelsk and Kola.

The Dutch and English has several whaling stations on Spitsbergen and Jan Mayen. The Dutch explorations of the northeast passage are on the right, with Nova Zemla, Cape Plancio, Nassau Strait, Ian Huygen's [van Linschoten] hoeck, Nieu Hollandt, etc. In the White Sea, the islands and remote monastery of Solofsky (Solovetsky) are shown.

Accidental Dutch sightings of the Greenland coast are marked and dated 1654, 1655 and 1670.

The chart prominently depicts the notoriously dangerous (Saltstraumen) Maelstroom, the strongest tidal current in the world, and a whirlpool legend.

The title cartouche is in auricular style. Below the title it has Doncker's address as Newly published in Amsterdam. By Hendrick Doncker, Bookseller and Instrument maker, in the New Bridge Alley, In the Navigators Toolkit. His shop was right at the entrance of the port of Amsterdam.

The mileage scalebar is flanked by two putti with nautical instruments, one with an armillary sphere, the other with a Jacob's staff. The scale is given in Dutch nautical miles (of 15 in a degree), Spanish natical miles (of 17.5 in a degree), as well as English and French nautical miles (of 20 in a degree). Note that the chart is in plane projection, with equidistant latitude degrees, as opposed to increasing degrees (Mercator projection).

Hendrick Doncker was one of the best publishers of sea atlases in the seventeenth century, when Amsterdam was the summit of the world.

A very decorative and elegant sea chart with loxodromes, ships, and compass roses. Attractive original color, excellent condition.

Hendrick Doncker (c.1626-1699)
Hendrick Doncker II (son) (c.1664-c.1739)

For about fifty years Hendrick Doncker ran a flourishing business in Amsterdam as a bookseller and publisher of sea atlases and textbooks on navigation. In a period when so many maps and charts were simply copied from other publishers, Doncker's charts were his own work and were noted for their accuracy and constant improvement. Apart from this work, he cooperated for many years with Pieter Goos and Anthony Jacobsz in producing a pilot guide 'De Zeespiegel'. Eventually his stock was sold to Johannes van Keulen.

(Moreland and Bannister)