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Lot number: 34727
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Estimates : $ 27,000 - $ 31,000
Item is sold for $ 32,000


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Publisher: ELIOT, J.B.
Title: Carte du Theatre de la Guerre actuel entre les Anglais et les Trieze Colonies Unies de l'Amerique Septentrionale dresse par J.B. Eliot
Published: Paris, 1778

Size: 26.8 x 19.7 inches.
68.0 x 50.0 cm.
Colouring: In original o/l colours.
Condition:  Printed on thick paper, with good original margins. Contemporary repair of a tear in lower margin, just affecting the scale border. Paper a bit toned but general in very good condition. Dark impression.
The margins have for pin holes from contemporary display !

 Condition Rating

A fine example of J. B. Eliot's map of the United States, in its first state - which is generally regarded as the earliest map to include the title "United States" (in French) on a printed map.

Eliot's map was drawn from American sources not previously utilized on any printed map.
Read more about The earliest maps to use the name Etats Unis (United States) in the title.
The map translates from the French as "Map of the Actual Seat of War between the English and the Thirteen United Colonies' of North America, as described by J.B. Eliot, an Engineer of the United States".

In an excellent essay on the map by Margaret Pritchard and Henry Taliaferro (Mapping Colonial America - Degrees of Latitude, Map 58), the importance of the map and Eliot, its mysterious maker are discussed at greater length. ‘The map of the theater of war between Great Britain and America by J.B. Eliot is important because of its title, " les Trieze Colonies Unies de l'Amerique Septentrionale", may include the first reference on a map to the United States. The cartographer was identified as Ingenieurs des Etats Unis. On November 15, 1777, the Continental Congress selected ‘The United States of America,’ as the name of the thirteen colonies that formed a government under the Articles of Confederation.
One month later, French authorities learned of the victory at Saratoga and decided to recognize American independence. By January 8, French foreign minister, Charles Gravier, Comte de Vergennes, informed American envoys that France was ready to engage in an alliance. It is not surprising that the name United States was first mentioned on a map published in Paris in 1778.

A fine and rare separately published early map of the American War of Independence, THE FIRST MAP TO BEAR THE NAME OF THE UNITED STATES, and Eliot describing himself as an Engineer of the United States.
Eliot was an American military engineer and aide-de-campe to General Washington, and after preparation he forwarded the draft for this map to Paris where it was engraved. The French had declared an alliance with the American Revolutionaries on May 4th 1778, and this map would have served to raise the interest in this conflict in France, as well as being a tacit recognition of American Independence.

A very rare map, only a handful examples are recorded.



Reference: Schwartz and Ehrenberg Mapping of America plate 122; Phillips Maps of America in the Library of Congress 859. Pritchard & Taliaferro, map 58..

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Item category: America | North America

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Item category: America | North America










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We warranty the authenticity of each old map, print, atlas, medieval manuscript described in this catalogue. There is no time limitation to this garantuee.
- Splits, tears, discolouration and other defects are carefully noted. In addition we use a condition rating system certificate
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