Leen Helmink Antique Maps

Old books, maps and prints by Jacob and Casparus Lootsman

Theunis (Anthonie) Jacobsz (1606 or 1607-1650)
Jacob Theunisz Lootsman (son) (d. 1679)
Casparus (Jasper) Theunisz Lootsman (1635-1711)


The family name of the Lootsman brothers is Theunisz. Their father Theunis or Anthonie Jacobsz, was the founder of a flourishing publishing house in Amsterdam.

As there was more than one printer of the same name, he added the adjective Lootsman to his. Theunis Jacobsz had an important positant in the group of Amsterdam publishers who specialized in maritime works. After Jacob Colom, he was the second to publish a pilot guide with charts in the classical shape introduced by the Blaeus. As he died early in 1650, his sons published the greater part of the many editions.

Theunis Jacobsz was born in 1606 or 1607. He married Lijntje Robijns in 1631 and settled op het Water, in de Lootsman tussen de Oude en Nieuwe brugh. Around 1644 his sign read at the Signe of the History of Josephus. Of the many works he printed was a Bible. The first edition of his pilot guide must have appeared before 1644. When he died in 1650, he left five underaged children.

His widow continued the business until their sons, Casparus and Jacob, could take over. Casparus became a member of the Guild on 17 August 1665. He became one of the town's printers in 1675 and after the death of his brother Jacob in 1679, associated himself with his nephew Jacob Conijnenberg, son of his sister, Jannetje. Both lived in the house on the water (Damrak), where Jacob Conijnenbergh took over the house in 1711, after the death of Casparus.

In 1692, there was a sale of the goods belonging to the estate of Lijntje Robins, widow of Theunis Jacobsz, Lijntje had died in 1689. In this sale Seeboecken soo van de Ooster en Wester Scheepvaert, Middellantse See, in duyts, frans, engels ende andere talen were sold. Although Casparus was quite often mentioned in the records, very little was said about his brother Jacob.

Jacob Theunisz, son of Theunis (= Anthonie) Jacobsz and brother of Casparus Lootsman, must have been the associate of the latter in the printing and publishing business. After 1650, the year of the father's death, the address of the title of the pilot guides often contains both the name of the father and son(s). Some of the works bear the name of only one of the sons, others mention the two brothers.

In the beginning, the Lootsman brothers had to compete with Jacob Colom; later, with Hendrick Doncker, Pieter Goos (after 1675 with Hendrick Goos), and Jacob Robijn. The English edition of Lootsman's Sea-Mirrour was also sold by Jacobus Robijn. A copy of the first part of the 1686 edition is known with a title-page by Robijn, dated 1688, in the Maritime Museum, Rotterdam. However, the charts in that copy are all by Goos. Other copies of Lootsman's Sea-Mirrour, dated 1692, have been bound together with Sea-Mirrours sold by Jac. Robijn.

The following notary act may serve as proof that a certain cooperation existed among the competitors.

On 29 May 1680. Hendrick Doncker, Casparus Lootsman and Hendrick Goos stated that they had made, since many years, a sea book of the Eastern, Western and Mediterranean Navigation called: Stiermans Zeespiegel, Lootsman's Zeespiegel and Nieuwe Groote Zeespiegel, resp. Being one book, but named in three different ways, with a third part annexed, called the Straetsboeck. And that recently it looked that unqualified persons ventured to copy that book which would cause much loss to them. But also that because of the many errors put in the charts by those unqualified persons, the pilots and their vessel would take great risk by using the counterfeited works. Because of these reasons they asked the States of Holland and West Friesland to grant them a privilegio for a period of 20 years for the printing and selling to the Sea books mentioned above, in all languages.

This application for protection may have been directed against the charts of Johannes van Keulen, who had embarked upon his great project about that time.


Jacob and Casparus Lootsman items for sale