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Anne Seile: Africae Nova Descriptio

Map: AFR5665
 
Cartographer: Anne Seile
Title: Africae Nova Descriptio
Date: 1663
Published: London
Width: 17 inches / 44 cm
Height: 13 inches / 34 cm
Map ref: AFR5665
Description:
Anne Seile employed Robert Vaughan to engrave this map only a year after her husband's death. Her husband, Henry Seile, had previously engraved and published a set of continent maps for Peter Heylin's 'Cosmographie'. Unusually for the period, Seile did not inherit her late husband's copperplates, and had to instruct Vaughan to re-engrave them to the same specification. This is the earliest known map of Africa attributed to a female mapmaker.

Unsurprisingly, the geography of this map is very similar to Henry Seile's earlier version, though some minor decorative elements were reworked for Anne's edition. Both are considered archetypal 17th-century maps of the continent. This map is embellished with sea monsters and ships, and has a menagerie of miniature animals roaming the interior.

[Betz (R.L.): The Mapping of Africa 100] [AFR5665]