Chart of northern Dalmatia from 'Atlas Novus'
By JANSSONIUS, Johannes , 1650

Iadera, Sicum et Aenona Vulgo Zara. Sibenico et Nona cum Insulis adjacentibus in Parte Dalmatiae Boreali.

Balkans Europe
  • Author: JANSSONIUS, Johannes
  • Publication place: Amsterdam
  • Publisher: Joannem Janssonium
  • Publication date: 1650
  • Physical description: Engraved map in original outline hand-colour.
  • Inventory reference: 3533


Chart of northern Dalmatia including Zadar, Sibenik and the town of Nin. During this period this region was a prosperous region of the Venetian Republic, although it was constantly attacked by the Ottomans during the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries. This conflict is represented in the title cartouche which is flanked by figures of Turkish and Venetian soldiers. The mileage scale is decorated with symbols of the Venetian Republic, including the Doge’s cap and the Venetian Lion.

Although pilot guides, or rutters, supplemented by charts had been produced as early as 1584, Jansson must be credited with the production of the “first real sea-atlas”, which contained “a collection of charts in folio size, to serve as an atlas for general purposes” (Van der Krogt). Some Anglo-Italians might put forward for that title Robert Dudley’s Acarno del Mare – a work of numerable firsts, published in 1646 – but it was not until the second edition of 1661 that all the charts in it were uniformly bound.

The atlas was published in 1650, as the fifth volume to Jansson’s ‘Atlas Novus’ – as is made explicit in the title. The volume, which was referred to as the ‘Waterwereld’ (Waterworld), would later be published as a stand-alone volume. Of the 23 charts in the atlas, 21 were published for the first time and, even if many have “more a characteristic of geographical maps than charts” (Koeman) and the “elaborate printed text … is not pertaining to maritime affairs” (Koeman), the work’s influence was considerable, as can be seen in the output of the likes of Goos, Colom, and van Keulen.

The atlas also includes the ‘Atlas Antiquus’, which consists of ten historical maps. The maps of the Ancient World and Ancient Greece had appeared earlier; the eight detailed maps of the Greek regions drawn by Johannes Laurenberg appear here for the first time.


  1. Koeman Me 171
  2. Van der Krogt, 1:416.5M&O.