Arrowsmith's large chart of the East Indies
By ARROWSMITH, Aaron , 1824

Chart of the East India Islands. Exhibiting several passages between the Indian and Pacific Oceans; Inscribed to the Commanders and Officers of the British Ships navigating those seas, by A. Arrowsmith.

Asia Southeast Asia
  • 作者: ARROWSMITH, Aaron
  • 出版地: London
  • 出版商: A. & S. Arrowsmith, 10 Soho Square
  • 发布日期: February 10th, 1824.
  • 物理描述: Engraved chart, fine original outline hand-colour, on four sheets, dissected and mounted on linen, each sheet edged in blue silk.
  • 方面: 1310 by 1870mm (51.5 by 73.5 inches).
  • 库存参考: 11390


Rare definitive edition of Arrowsmith’s chart of the East Indies.

This large chart stretches from Burma to Pupua New Guinea and inlcudes, numerous soundings, and the marking of the best routes for sailing to Canton, throughout the year. For the 1824 edition Arrowsmith has added seven block of text to the chart, the majority providing information upon the monsoon seasons and the violent tempests around the coast areas known as the “Ty-fongs”. The text block next to Pinang Island gives a brief description of the island, and the acquisition of it by the East India Company in 1786.

Aaron Arrowsmith (1750-1823), ​”easily the foremost cartographer of his time” (R.V. Tooley), was the founder of the Arrowsmith dynasty of cartographers. Born in County Durham, he was in London by 1777 when he witnessed the will of Andrew Dury, a mapseller and publisher, and was probably training with him; he may have trained with William Faden, Geographer to the King, but was certainly employed by John Cary in 1782, as he is credited with the survey work for ​’Cary’s Actual Survey, of the Great Post Roads between London and Falmouth’, published in 1784; he is frequently credited with some of the survey work for Cary’s county atlas, ​’Cary’s New and Correct English Atlas: being a set of county maps from actual surveys’ (1787), but the sources are silent on this and by this time Arrowsmith had established his own business.

Arrowmsith’s maps set a new standard; he was assiduous in analysing and verifying his sources, discarding not only the fictional but also the uncertain, going to printed and manuscript sources for his information, and engraved in a clear and highly legible style. Arrowsmith was also diligent in revising and improving his maps to keep them current, and served as an inspiration for the next generation of (particularly American) surveyors.