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Lot number: 39943
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Publisher: DE BRY, Th.
Title: Johannes Hugonis a Linschoten Haerlemensis aeta 35 A 1598 Soufrir pour parvenir.
Published: Frankfurt a.M. 1597 - 1599

Size: 6.1 x 5.1 inches.
15.5 x 13.0 cm.
Colouring: Uncoloured.
Condition:  Very fine condition. Dark impression.
 Condition Rating

Very decorative portrait of Jan Huyghen van Linschoten (1563, Haarlem 8 February 1611, Enkhuizen), engraved by Theodor de Bry (1528-1593) and published in Jean Jacques Boissard, "Icones Virorum Illustrium".

Jan Huyghen van Linschoten was a Dutch Protestant merchant, traveller and historian. An alternate spelling of second name is Huijgen.
He is credited with copying top-secret Portuguese nautical maps thus enabling the passage to the elusive East Indies to be opened to the English and the Dutch. This enabled the British East India Company and the Dutch East India Company to break the 16th century monopoly enjoyed by the Portuguese on trade with the East Indies.

Jan Huyghen was the son of a public notary from the town of Haarlem in the Netherlands, but the family moved to the town of Enkhuizen when he was young. He left for Spain during December 1576 to be with his brother in Seville, staying in Spain until 1580 when he got a job working with another merchant in Lisbon. A downturn in trade led him to seek alternatives.
With the help of his brother, Willem, who was acquainted with the newly appointed Archbishop of the Portuguese colony of Goa, Dominican Vicente da Fonseca, he was appointed Secretary to the Archbishop. So Jan Huyghens sailed for Goa on 8 April 1583, arriving five months later via Madeira, Guinea, the Cape, Madagascar and Mozambique.

While in Goa, as a result of his position, Jan Huyghens had access to secret information, including the nautical maps that were well guarded for over a century. Misusing the trust in him, for reasons unknown, Jan Huyghens began meticulously copying these maps.

In June 1594, Linschoten sailed from Texel in the expedition headed by Dutch cartographer Willem Barentsz. The fleet of three ships was to enter the Kara Sea, with the hopes of finding the Northeast passage above Siberia. The following year they sailed again in a new expedition of six ships, loaded with merchant wares that they hoped to trade with China. Linschoten was one of the two crewmembers to have published journals on Barentsz' travels.
In 1595, with assistance from Amsterdam publisher Cornelis Claesz, who specialised in shipping, geography and travels, Jan Huyghens wrote Reys-gheschrift vande navigatien der Portugaloysers in Orienten (Travel Accounts of Portuguese Navigation in the Orient). This work contains a large number of sailing directions, not only for shipping between Portugal and the East Indies colonies, but also between India, China and Japan.

Jan Huyghen also wrote two other books, Beschryvinghe van de gantsche custe van Guinea, Manicongo, Angola ende tegen over de Cabo de S. Augustijn in Brasilien, de eyghenschappen des gheheelen Oceanische Zees (Description of the Entire Coast of Guinea, Manicongo, Angola and across to the Cabo de St. Augustus in Brazil, the Characteristics of the Entire Atlantic Ocean) in 1597, and Itinerario: Voyage ofte schipvaert van Jan Huyghen van Linschoten naer Oost ofte Portugaels Indien, 1579-1592 (Travel account of the voyage of the sailor Jan Huyghen van Linschoten to the Portuguese East India) in 1596.
An English text edition of the Itinerario was published in London in 1598, entitled Iohn Huighen van Linschoten his Discours of Voyages into ye Easte & West Indies. A German edition was also printed the same year.

List of Explorers and Mapmakers [+]



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