Dal P.M. Coronelli M.C. Cosmografo della Serma. Rep. di Venetia. Relief shown pictorially. Coordinates approximate and based on Greenwich meridian. 7 bar scales on map, given in "miglia d'Italia", "leghe di Francia", "leghe di Spagna", "leghe d'Alemagna", "leghe communi di mare", "dicto, ò Giornate" and "Stadi Chinesi". Shows topography, drainage, coastline, islands, shoals, political boundaries. Compass rose, rhumb lines. Includes key. Decorative cartouches showing tools, such as a sun dial. Descriptive text throughout. Collector's note: A stunning, richly colored example of one of Coronelli's scarcest and most sought after maps. It provided not only a state-of-the-art depiction of China, but also a visual compendium of the tools of the surveyor and cartographer. The precisely engraved instruments decorating the map are a tribute to the technical skill of the Jesuit missionaries, whose surveys formed the basis of the map. The Jesuits in China sought opportunities to display their technical skills and scientific knowledge to Chinese intellectuals. The Jesuits felt that if the Chinese inielligencia could be persuaded of the superiority of Western learning, then they might also accede to the superiority of Christianity as a religion and influence those in power toward conversion. One of the most dramatic means of making such a demonstration was the creation of maps, some of them actually printed in China and in the Chinese language; some were of enormous size to heighten their impact. Perhaps Coronelli had it the mind that this map could be used in the fashion described above by his fellow clergymen. (Coronelli himself, however, was not a Jesuit; somewhat surprisingly, given his worldly achievements and the powerful circles in which he traveled, he was a Franciscan.) Coronelli was arguably the most important mapmaker of the late 17th century and probably the most productive as well, having published over 500 maps in his lifetime. At the same time, he rose to the position of General of the Franciscan order at the beginning of the 18th century. It is likely it was through his dual roles as cartographer and powerful clergyman that he was able to obtain the information that allowed him to produce such a fine map of China. As a cartographer, Coroneili carried on a wide-ranging correspondence with explorers and scholars. And as a senior clergyman, he most likely had access to geographical information on China obtained by missionaries. In any case, Coronelli's mapping of China was superior to anything available in its day. In addition to all of this, Coronelli is also regarded as one of the finest early globe makers. His reputation in this field was secured by a pair of globes he made for Louis XIV that measured 15 feet in diameter and became one of the wonders of the monarch's court. Coronelli is also credited with having revived both the craft of engraving and the study of geography in his native Venice.