Monthly Archives: January 2018

The Stuart Dynasty Attempts to Regain the British Throne

uk vintage map

Map of the British Isles, 1744.

In 1747, the Kingdom of Great Britain and the Kingdom of Ireland were under the reign of King George II. A couple of years before this map was printed, the Jacobite Rising took place in 1745. The uprising was an attempt by Charles Edward Stuart, commonly known as “Bonnie Prince Charlie”, to restore the Stuart dynasty to the British throne.

The atmosphere of this event is well described in Walter Scott’s novel “Waverley” and Diane Cavaldon’s popular “Outlander” series.

Buy restored reproduction of this map printed on a high quality handmade paper here.

Java under Dutch Control

java antique map reproduction

Map of the Island of Java, 1700

In 1700, Java was part of a Dutch colony that had been administered through the Dutch East India Company (VOC) for almost one hundred years. The VOC controlled much of the spice trade in the area of what is today Indonesia and beyond that. Batavia (today known as Jakarta) was established as the VOC headquarters in 1619. Based on agreements with the native kingdoms on Java, only Dutch ships were allowed to trade in the archipelago and so the VOC became the dominant ruler in the area. The Dutch sent close to a million people to Indonesia in the 17th and 18th centuries to further strengthen its control over the region.

Europe and a wider world, 1415–1715” by the British historian J. H. Parry comprehensively covers the Dutch colonial era in Indonesia.

Buy restored reproduction of this map printed on a high quality handmade paper here.

The Pillars of Hercules

old nautical map gibraltar

Nautical Map of the Strait of Gibraltar, 1644.

The Strait of Gibraltar has always been a highly strategic naval passage between the Atlantic and the Mediterranean and therefore the subject of many disputes and wars. The name comes from Arabic, meaning Tariq’s mountain, referring to the Muslim commander Tariq ibn Ziyad who conquered the Rock in the early 8th century. In ancient times, the Strait was called The Pillars of Hercules (Columnae Herculis). This refers to the legend of Hercules and his twelve labours. One of these, which included travelling to the most western limits of the world, was to bring the cattle of Geryon to Greece. The title Pillars of Hercules was also included on ancient maps before Gibraltar became the widespread name for the Rock and the nearby Strait from the 8th century onwards.

The travel book, “Pillars of Hercules” by Paul Theroux describes the author’s travels from Gibraltar around the coast of the Mediterranean Sea to Ceuta, a Spanish territory in Africa, just across from Gibraltar.

Buy restored reproduction of this map printed on a high quality handmade paper here.

Handmade paper Lampshade

Map reproductions printed on a handmade paper are a classic, giving the maps the ancient look they need. I simply love this material and it is pleasure to test new ways of using it in home decor.

Here is my newest tip:

A Handmade Paper Lampshade

I collected and dried a few of meadow flowers last summer. I collected them on the fields around the house I grew up. When the flowers got dry I asked the paper maker who othwerwise makes handmade paper for my maps to insert the flowers into a Japanese style “washi” paper and make a few sheets of it for me.

Than I attached the paper on a lampshade construction made by my Dad, who is an electrician and attached the shade to a lampstand I purchased in IKEA. I called my new lamp “Hlavnov” after the hill I collected the flowers on. I have wonderful childhood memories from the place and my new lamp is their daily reminder:-)

I love the result! How do you like it?

handmade paper lampshade

The Sun King’s France

antique map reproduction france

Historical Map of France Depicting the Country during the Rule of Louis XIV., 1760.

This map shows the administrative division of France during the rule of Louis XIV of France, also known also as Louis the Great or The Sun King, who ruled the country between 1643 and 1715. Some of the overseas French colonies of that period and plans of major French cities are also included. Louis XIV is one of the most significant figures in French history, having a strong influence on developments elsewhere in Europe (the War of the Spanish Succession) and overseas (the French colonies).

His personal life was as turbulent as his life as a statesman and is fully described in Antonia Fraser’s “Love and Louis XIV: The Women in the Life of the Sun King”.

Buy restored reproduction of this map printed on a high quality handmade paper here.

Antarctica Yet To Be Discovered

antarctica vintage map reproduction

Map of the South Pole and the Adjoining Regions, 1803.

Long before Antarctica had been explored as a continent, there was frequent speculation about Terra Australia (Southern Land), a vast landmass located in the very south of the Earth, which balanced the continents in the northern hemisphere.

When circumnavigating the southernmost point of the South American mainland in 1520, Ferdinand Magellan believed that the land he was passing on the left side was actually an extension of the unexplored southern land. In reality, what he actually saw were the islands of Tiera del Fuego, the southernmost part of what is today Argentina. When Australia was discovered at the beginning of the 17th century, it was believed to be part of the Terra Australis. It was Abel Tasman who, about forty years later, proved that Australia was separated from the southern continent by the sea.

Captain James Cook first crossed the Antarctic Circle in 1772. Cook mapped a large part of the Southern Pacific and the Atlantic very well during his voyages and proved that Tiera del Fuego and New Zealand were not one landmass but were separated by the sea — a large ocean. It is now clear that Cook was very close to Antarctica and probably got as close as 240km (150miles) from the continent’s mainland. However, he never landed on its shores nor sighted land, as he was stopped by floating ice on his way further south. This is why this map, printed 30 years after his voyages, still does not depict the continent. Nevertheless, there are four zigzag lines representing Cook’s attempts to discover the southern continent, two of which can be seen within the Antarctic Circle.

Antarctica was finally discovered a couple of years later; the first sighting is documented in 1819 and the first landing documented in 1821.

Buy restored reproduction of this map printed on a high quality handmade paper here.

1720s – High Baroque in Prague

prague antique map reproduction

Map of the City of Prague, 1720.

This map of Prague shows the three oldest quarters of the city: The Old Town (including the Jewish neighbourhood of Josefov), the New Town and the Lesser Town. In 1720, Bohemia with Prague as its capital was part of the Habsburg Monarchy ruled by Emperor Charles VI. The first half of the 18th century was a period of High Baroque architecture in Bohemia.
In the first half of the 18th century, Prague’s iconic Charles Bridge featured 30 baroque statues of saints.

Buy restored reproduction of this map printed on a high quality handmade paper here.

The Foundation of Antananarivo

antique map reproduction madagascar

Map of the Island of Madagascar, 1677.

In the 17th century, the majority of the territory that is now Madagascar was part of the Marina Kingdom (c. 1540–1897). Antananarivo, the present day capital city of the modern state of Madagascar, was founded around the time the map was first printed. In the local language, Antananarivo means the city of the thousand. Back then, it took time to include a newly founded town into a map, which is why Antananarivo is not shown on this map.

Buy restored reproduction of this map printed on a high quality handmade paper here.