Friday, 17 February 2017

Heritage Editions Australian Limited Edition Maps

Bowen c1744. 1st English map of Australia

Heritage Editions Limited Editions maps have been reprinted from antique maps that reported some of the most important milestones in the discovery of Australia.

Many individuals contributed to the publication of original antique maps when the journals and charts of a voyage were originally published. A map may have been surveyed by a navigator on a voyage, drawn by a cartographer (literally, map-drawer), and then carved into a metal plate by an engraver after the ship returned home. Sometimes one or more specialist map illustrators were employed to draw and engrave embellishments for more important maps. After they were printed the maps were often published for an atlas, or a travel book recording voyages of discovery. This would have involved an editor who compiled the book or atlas, and a publisher who organized the printing and binding. If the map was important it was sometimes published in more than one country. This involved additional editors and publishers – and sometimes also engravers when the map was re-engraved.
Cook c1770. 1st chart of eastern Australia 'New South Wales' & Cape Tribulation to Endeavour Straits
If a map required updating following later discoveries, the updated section of the engraved copperplate would be beaten or ground flat, and re-engraved for re-publication. Each antique maps is considered to be an original map of the date of its publication. “Original” indicates that a map was printed onto a piece of paper from an engraved plate at the original publication date specified. 
John Oxley c1823. Brisbane River chart

It is always nice to be able to buy an original antique copperplate engraving of an important early map or chart. However, not only is this sometimes not possible owing to limited funds, it is also sometimes not practical as there is only a limited number of pieces of paper surviving and some are rarely seen outside museums or other public institutions.

Later edition reproduction prints of these important maps have been reprinted as Limited Editions. Because of their importance, for wider enjoyment, the above maps are now available as Heritage Editions. Printed in small numbers, these are now referred to as modern Limited Editions. 

No comments:

Post a Comment