|Method||Steel engraved with hand colour|
|Published||Geographie et Statistique par V. Levasseur, Ingenieur Geographe. Grave par Laguillermie, rue St. Jacques, 82. Illustre par Raimond Bonheur, Peintre. Impie. Lemercier, rue de Seine, 57, Paris. A Paris, chez A. Combette, Editeur, rue de la Parcheminerie, 15. [c.1850]|
|Dimensions||305 x 435 mm|
A decorative mid-nineteenth century French map of the continent of Asia by Levasseur, engraved for the Atlas Universel Illustre. The map shows the various nations and kingdoms of Asia, outlined in hand colour. Siberia is separated from 'Russia,' a name applied only to the European section of the modern nation, Mongolia is shown as part of China, Afghanistan is split into the separate Kingdom of Kaboul and Confederation of Belouchistan, and British India combines modern Pakistan, India, Bangladesh, and Nepal. South east asia (Burmah, Siam, Malacca, Annam, and Cochinchina) is grouped together. The most striking feature of the map is actually the highly ornate border which surrounds it, containing oval vignettes of figures in various national dress at top and bottom, and to the left and right, large text panels of statistics and populations topped by a crowned personification of Asia on the left, and Adam and Eve in the Garden on the right. The latter are watched by a spectral God figure, his head surrounded by an unusual triangular halo. In the bottom left and right corners are numerous Asian animals.
Victor Levasseur (1795-1862) was a French geographer, cartographer, and mapmaker, known for his highly decorative maps, the most famous of which were a set of French department maps embellished with symbols of their respective produce and industry, published in the Atlas National Illustré des 86 Départements et des Possessions de La France. This and his Atlas Universel Illustre were amongst the last great decorative atlases.
Joseph Lemercier (1803-1887) was the founder of the large and prolific Parisian printer and publisher Lemercier & Cie.
Condition: Central vertical fold as issued. Time toning to edges of sheet. Some minor creasing. Blank on verso.