Leen Helmink Antique Maps

Holy Land by Blaeu




Terra Sancta


Amsterdam, 1630


38.2 x 49.9 cms


Copper engraving

Stock number





$ 1250


One of the beautiful plates that Willem Blaeu acquired as early as as 1629 from the heritage of Jodocus Hondius.

"At this time, many of the maps of Palestine were oriented to show east at the top to focus on Jerusalem. Here, the orientation is inverted so that Blaeu's map shows Palestine as it might have been viewed by Moses from the top of Mt Pisgah. The decorative features are Old Testament in inspiration: Moses, holding the Tablets of the Law, stands to the left of the cartouche, Aaron to the right, while in the Mediterranean Jonah is about to be swallowed by the whale and in Sinai is shown the route of the exodus. In the Red Sea at Yam Suf, Pharaoh's armies are shown drowning. The lands of the Twelve Tribes are shown straddling both banks of the Jordan, and the city of Jerusalem can be seen occupying a place of honour in the upper centre of the map.

The geographical detail of the map itself is taken from an inset on a large map of Palestine by the traveller Pieter Laicksteen and the mapmaker to Philip II of Spain, Christian 's-Grooten, published at Antwerpen in 1570."