16th century world map valued at $10m

Daniel Crouch Rare Books is to sell a spectacular 16th century world map by Genoese cartographer Vesconte Maggiolo at the TEFAF art and antique fair in New York.

The event runs from October 22-26.

The map is one of the first to show the east coast of the United States and the very first to depict New York harbour – almost a century before Henry Hudson first sailed up the river that bears his name.

It’s printed on vellum and is close to seven feet long when unfurled. Fortunately it has been rolled up for many centuries, meaning the colours remain unusually bright and bold for a map this old.

It’s painted with images of kings, castles and mythical creatures.

The item is offered with an asking price of $10m, which would place it on equal footing with the important Waldseemuller map.

That map achieved $10m in a private sale in 2003.

Daniel Crouch told Bloomberg: “It’s one of the oldest to depict Ferdinand Magellan’s voyage. The map depicts the whole world.

“If we sold it for $10 million, it would make it the most expensive map ever sold [publicly], along with the Waldseemuller map at the Library of Congress.

“And it is certainly a lot more beautiful than the Waldseemuller map.”