Bellin (Jacques Nicolas, 1703-72)
Carte de l'Isle de Portsey et Havre de Portsmouth, published 1764
Hand coloured engraved map
An attractive mid 18th century engraved chart of Portsea Island and Portsmouth Harbour. Portsmouth was then confined to what is now Old Portsmouth and the dockyard, with the surrounding ramparts and moats clearly marked. Gosport was similarly constrained by its civil war era fortifications. Much of the area of modern-day Southsea was then a wasteland known locally as The Great Morass but here marked as "prairies ou marais" (meadow or marsh). The castles at Portchester and Southsea are both marked.
Contained within an antique rosewood frame with a gilt slip.
Overall size including frame: 35 x 28.6 cm
Born in Paris, Bellin was a huge figure in 18th century mapmaking and was commissioned to carry out surveys of the coasts of most of the known world. He was later appointed official hydrographer to the French king. This chart of Portsmouth would originally have been published in Bellin's Petit Atlas Maritime which ran to five volumes and was published In 1764.