Posted on: 24 January 2014

Rare Map:
Imperii Magni Mogolis sive Indici Padschach juxta recentissimas Navigationes accurrata delineatio . . .
Map Maker: Mathaus Seutter
Augsburg / 1728 ca

Detailed map of India, extending from the Ganges to Eastern Persia and North to the Mont de Caucause (Himalayas).

Colored by provinces. Includes 2 large decorative vignettes and a sailing ship.

Click here for an extra large map:

Source: Barry Lawrence Ruderman Antique Maps

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Seutter's magnificent map of the mughals, studded with cartouches. Amplifies the errors made by Blaeu in interpreting the soobahs of Ain-i-Akbari.

India's geographic area seems to have shrunk quite a bit in Anglo-Saxon records, judging by John Speed’s “A New Map of East India” from 1676: :)

True that. In European cartography, India meant everything beyond Pars ( Persia) & below Tartaria & China. From Ptolemy's time to the era of exploration, the distinction of India on maps appears as " India intra Gangem" & "India extra Gangem" i.e. India inside the Ganga & India outside the Ganga. Tables 9, 10 & 11 of Ptolemy reflect this. English cartographer, Robert Morden too translates this & carries on in this tradition, as late as end of 17th century. Even after the arrival of scientific mapping with d'anville & James rennell, the distinction on maps is - India & Greater India ( or "Further India" sometimes). Of course, the discovery of new land to the west of europe leads to the World Maps using the term " West India" & " East India". Waldseemuller introduced the term "Amerigo's (Vespucci, the world's first travel blogger) Ca (land, in latin)" in his landmark map. Two hundred & fifty years after Waldseemuller's naming of America (North & South) , most of today's "South-East Asia" continued to be labeled " East Indies" in European cartography. Of course, the term "European" itself expanded to become " Western". Now it includes parts of America & also some new foundlands in the south - Austrahlia & "New" Zealand . And it excludes the part of India which chose to start afresh with a " Clean ( Pak)" slate / state/location (Sthan) , Pakistan." India" is just the last remains of an ever-evolving European/Western idea of " that land which lies beyond it" . Often its the images/art/cartouches of these maps which really reflect what that India means for the map-maker of that time. Here in Seutter's map, amidst the ships & greek/roman myth iconography, dont miss the stocks of ivory in two of the cartouches, exotic birds, chests full of gold coins, diamonds & precious metals, exotic flora & fauna ...