[SPEED, JOHN] A Mapp of the Sommer Ilands once called the Bermudas...
London: George Humble, circa 1626. Hand-colored double-page engraved map engraved by Abraham Goos in Amsterdam, the text of the map in Latin and English, with English text on the verso under the heading The Description of the Sommer Ilands, once called the Bermudas, the pages numbered 41-42 and providing a description of the islands in four text columns. Neat lines 15 7/8 x 21 inches (40.3 x 53.4 cm); the full sheet 16 1/2 x 21 1/2 inches (42 x 53.7 cm). Trimmed close and within neat line at places, the upper corners rounded with the trimming just touching engraved border, old repaired tear to lower margin into text area, one longer tear into image very discreetly mended, remnants of old mounting tape to verso, early manuscript atlas indicator "41" to upper right corner.
This rare early map of Bermuda was one of two maps of the New World included in Speed's 1627 A Prospect of the Most Famous Parts of the World (the other the map of the Americas). The map is the first to show the islands divided into the "Tribes" and "Shares" or the properties given to those led by Sir George Sommers who were shipwrecked there in 1609 in an attempt to reach Jamestown with relief supplies (this incident also thought to have been the motivation for Shakespeare's The Tempest). Stranded for 10 months, the adventurers built two ships from the one they had wrecked and reached Jamestown in 1610 only to find the colony in a desperate state and returned to Bermuda where Sommers died. The islands were surveyed and the map compiled by 1622 by Richard Norwood who had ventured to the colony to test his diving bell. Of note within the map is the depiction of Florida, Virginia with Roanoke, Capes Henry and Charles named, as well as Plymouth on Cape Cod. Speed's map was the source for copies by Blaeu, Jansson, Ogilby, etc.
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