Printed from www.AntiqueMapart.com Catalogue on Monday, Dec 04 2017

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1811 - Carte Generale de la Nouvelle Holland

Map makerSizeMap IDCondition
Freycinet 750 x 490 mmD1 / M10 / I15Several repaired tears, minor foxing, original folds. Please contact us for the condition report

The first complete, published map of Australia.

Although Matthew Flinders was the first person to circumnavigate Australia, in Her Majesty’s ship the Investigator between 1801-03, ironically it is the French who lay claim to publishing the first complete map of the Australian continent. Freycinet’s map was published in France in 1811 three years before Flinders’ own chart and appeared in the official account of the 1801-04 French voyage to Australia commanded by Nicolas Baudin.

Baudin’s exploits in Australia commenced some seven months before Flinders arrived from Spithead in the Investigator. Rather than head for the uncharted south-east coast, Baudin instead sailed north up the west coast of Australia, occasionally landing at points previously uncharted by the earlier 17th century Dutch navigators, finally arriving at Timor. Meanwhile Flinders had set out from Cape Leeuwin in an easterly direction, with the intention of circumnavigating the continent. When Baudin eventually made it to the southern coast of Australia, Flinders had already charted a great deal of the previously uncharted south-eastern coast. The two parties finally crossed paths at Encounter Bay (east of Adelaide) on 8 April 1802. Baudin had managed to chart only a small 200-mile section of the coast west of Wilson’s Promontory. Although France at this time was at war with England, Flinders had been promised safe passage back to England. On his return however he was imprisoned by the French on Mauritius and held captive there for six and a half years.

Meanwhile the Baudin expedition had returned to France and the subsequent account of the voyage was published from 1807 onwards by Peron. In 1810, Peron died and Freycinet took over the task of completing the account. In 1811, Freycinet released the second part of the atlas, which contained this general chart of Australia. Flinders on the other hand had to wait until 1814 before he could publish his own general Australian map.

As a further blow to Flinders’ psyche, the Baudin / Freycinet map of Australia ignored entirely the English contribution to the charting of the southern coast. Fully aware of the discoveries made by Flinders and indeed Grant in Bass Strait in 1800, the French instead used their own patriotic names on the map to replace those given by Flinders and Grant. Many of the place names are given by Baudin.

This information is adapted from the Printed World catalogue series, one of the most enjoyable and informative Australian Antique map vcatalogues available, created and compiled by Simon Dewez.


View map online on http://www.antiquemapart.com/map/10