Jodocus Hondius

Jodocus Hondius

Jodocus Hondius the Elder (1563-1612), or Joost de Hondt, was one of the most prominent geographers and engravers of his time. His work did much to establish Amsterdam as the center of cartographic publishing in the seventeenth century. Born in Wakken but raised in Ghent, the young Jodocus worked as an engraver, instrument maker, and globe maker.

Hondius moved to London in 1584, fleeing religious persecution in Flanders. There, he worked for Richard Hakluyt and Edward Wright, among others. Hondius also engraved the globe gores for Emery Molyneux’s pair of globes in 1592; Wright plotted the coastlines. His engraving and nautical painting skills introduced him to an elite group of geographic knowledge seekers and producers, including the navigators Drake, Thomas Cavendish, and Walter Raleigh, as well as engravers like Theodor De Bry and Augustine Ryther. This network gave Hondius access to manuscript charts and descriptions which he then translated into engraved maps.

In 1593 Hondius returned to Amsterdam, where he lived for the rest of his life. Hondius worked in partnership with Cornelis Claesz, a publisher, and maintained his ties to contacts in Europe and England. For example, from 1605 to 1610, Hondius engraved the plates for John Speed’s Theatre of the Empire of Great Britaine.

One of Hondius’ most successful commercial ventures was the reprinting of Mercator’s atlas. When he acquired the Mercator plates, he added 36 maps, many engraved by him, and released the atlas under Mercator’s name, helping to solidify Mercator’s reputation posthumously. Hondius died in 1612, at only 48 years of age, after which time his son of the same name and another son, Henricus, took over the business, including the reissuing of the Mercator atlas. After 1633, Hondius the Elder’s son-in-law, Johannes Janssonius, was also listed as a co-publisher for the atlas.


1583 - (Sir Francis Drake) Franciscus Draeck Nobilissimus Eques Angliae Ano. Aet. Sue 43.

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Rare contemporary portait of Sir Francis Drake, celebrating his circumnavigation of the World, engraved by Jodocus Hondius during his residency in London and later finished by George Vertue in the early 18th Century. This marvelous engraving is...


1606 - America

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Hondius’ Impressive Map of the Americas Featuring Anian and Quiviria Fine old color example of this highly sought-after map of America, engraved by Joducus Hondius the Elder. The map shows the North and South American continents surrounded by...


1652 - America noviter delineata

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Nice old color example of the Hondius-Jansson Map of North America, first published in 1618. The map includes a marvelous peninsular California with the Northwest Coast of America stretching almost due westward toward Asia, with over 30 place names....


1596 - [World Map -- Thomas Cavendish Portrait] Thomas Candyssh nobilis Anglus aetatis suae XXXII.

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Extremely rare early double hemisphere world map and portrait of the explorer Thomas Cavendish, celebrating his circumnavigation of the World (1586-1588). The portrait is almost certainly from the pair of portraits of Cavendish and Sir Francis Drake,...


1611 - [Early Facsimile] Novissima ac Exactissima Totius Orbis Terrarum Descriptio Magna cura & industrial ex optimist quibusq[uae] tabulis Geographicis et Hydrographicis nuperrimisq[uae] doctorum virorum observationib. duobus planisphaerijs delineata Auct. J.

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"All men are as grass and all their glory as flowers of the field. The wages of sin is death." Edward Luther Stevenson's Personal Facsimile of One of the Greatest Dutch World Maps Ever Made. A fantastic Edward Bierstadt facsimile of the Jodocus...


1610 - Virginiae Item et Floridae Americae Provinciarum, nova Descriptio

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Early Seventeenth Century Map of Carolina and Virginia Fine old color example of Jodocus Hondius's important map of Virginia and the Carolinas, from the Mercator-Hondius A tlas Sive Cosmographie . . . Hondius utilized John White's map of Virginia and...


1620 - Tartaria

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Nice example of Hondius' map of Tartary, China, Korea and adjacent regions. Shows the Great Wall of China, Corea as an Island, a very early example of the northwest coast of America, naming Cape de Fortuna and the Straits of Anian (overlooked by...


1606 - Hispaniae Novae Nova Descriptio

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Mercator-Hondius Map of Mexico, a Foundational Map of New Spain Attractive map of Mexico from the Mercator-Hondius Atlas Sive Cosmographicae. This map and Ortelius' map of 1579 were foundational maps for all regional maps of Mexico to follow. The...


1619 - Cuba Insula [with] Hispaniola Insula [with] Insula Jamaica [with] Ins. S. Ioannis [with] I.S. Margareta Cum Confiniis

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Nice old color example of the Mercator-Hondius maps of Cuba, Puerto Rico, Hispaniola and Jamaica, with inset of Havana. A highly decorative map of the islands, embellished with sea monsters and sailing ships.


1630 - America Meridionalis

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Nice example of one of the earliest obtainable decorative maps of the South American continent. The Strait of Magellan is shown, but Tierra Del Fuego is part of the large southern continent. Eastern Brazil is depicted as an island, made insular by a...


1636 - Guiana Sive Amazonum Regio (English Edition!)

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A nice example of Henricus Hondius' map of the coast of South America, between the Orinoco River and the Amazon, centered on Parime Lacus, the rumored home of 'El Dorado'. This attractive map depicts the region of South America, which runs from the...


1625 - Germania

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Decorative map of the German Empire, from the Low Countries to Prussia, Poland, Hungary, Austria and Switzerland. Decorative cartouche, sailing ship and coat of arms. From the 1625-26 edition of Purchas His Pilgrims, one of the seminal early 17th...


1617 - Nova Helvetiae Tabula

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One of the Most Decorative 17th Century Maps of Switzerland. Decorative early map of Switzerland, including 7 city views and 6 costumed figures. Hondius' map of Switzerland is one of the most decorative single sheet maps of Switzerland published in...


1620 - Chorographica Tabula Lacus Lemanni Locorumque Circumiacentium Auctore Iac. G. Genevensi

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Finely colored example of Jodocus Hondius' map of the Lake Geneva area, oriented to the southeast. Includes fine detail and decorative embellishment. The extremely rare early editions of this map include 5 portraits at the bottom, which are now...


1619 - Bolonia & Guines Comitatus

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Rare Jodocus Hondius map of part of northwestern France. The map is oriented with west at the top and shows the French coast from Calais to Grofflieres and the Canche River. Within the map, the cities of Boulogne-Sur-Mer, Guines, Montreul, Renty,...


1619 - Messin Nova Territorii Metensis Descriptio Autore Abrahamo Fabert Consule Urbis Metensis . . .

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Striking example of Jodocus and Henricus Hondius' map of a portion of the Metz region of northeastern France. The map is centered on Metz and the Moselle River Region. The map is quite unusual, bearing the imprint of both Jodocus Hondius and Henricus...