Mappa Geographica complectens Indiae Occidentalis


Incredible composite map of the West Indies during the mid-18th century.

1 in stock

A high-resolution image is available for purchase. Email me for inquiries.

This stunning visual celebration of Spain’s New World Empire was published in Nuremberg by the Homann Heirs firm in about 1740. At the time, Spain and Britain were engaged in a regional conflict in the West Indies known as the War of Jenkin’s Ear. Prompted by the assault of an English ship captain several years earlier, war broke out in 1739, primarily due to disputes over trading rights and the lucrative asiento contract, which gave British slave traders permission to sell slaves in Spanish America. In 1742, the conflict, localized to the Caribbean and New Spain, would be subsumed into the broader War of Austrian Succession.

The map is comprised of seven different panels that each reflect a different component of the conflict. The primary image shows a map of the West Indies, the Gulf of Mexico, and Central America. Colonial possessions are colored according to the key in the center-right and topography is depicted in hachure. The four corners are occupied by insets of Vera Cruz, Santo Domingo, Saint Augustine (an early example of a Florida city plan), and a map of Panama showing the overland route of the silver-laden mule trains to Porto Bello. The lower center shows an incredible bird’s eye view of Mexico City, formerly the Aztec capital of Tenochtitlan. The decorative title cartouche contains text referencing the war between Spain and Britain and is surrounded by symbolism reflective of the New World.

Source: Historic UK


Map Details

Publication Date: 1740

Author: Homann Heirs

Sheet Width (in): 20.6

Sheet Height (in): 24.4

Condition: B+

Condition Description: Some ink smudging from the plate strike visible in several areas throughout the image, most evident in the center right and upper left. Discoloration and wear visible around the outer edges, including some small tears and toning on the right side that just enters the neatline. Some abrasion to the page in the Mexico City view, repaired and reinforced on the verso with minor affect to the engraving. Good to very good condition, with original outline color.


1 in stock