WAGHENAER, Lucas Janzoon. (1533-1606). The Mariners Mirrour. Wherein may Playnly be seen the Courses, Heights, Distances, Depths, Soundings, Flouds and Ebs, Risings of Lands, Rocks, Sands, Shoalds, with the Marks for th' Entrings of the Harbouroughs, Havens and Ports. [London: John Charlewood, ca.1588].
Two parts in one volume. Folio (15 4/8 x 11 inches). Two engraved title-pages: the first by Theodore de Bry after Jan van Deutecom (central vertical crease and gutter expertly renewed, discreet marginal repairs). Engraved arms of the dedicatee Christopher Hatton (central vertical crease and small hole renewed). 43 double-paged engraved charts only, by Jodocus Hondius, Theodor de Bry, Augustine Ryther and Johannes Rutlinger (of 45 - lacks maps 3 and 7 in the second part), 3 engraved illustrations of instruments (the uranicall without a volvelle, some expert marginal repairs, margins of the chart of Europe close-cropped). FINE modern calf gilt antique.
Provenance: The contemporary inscription of Michael Champre at the head of the title-page: 'Solde to Michael Champe [Master] of the Eagle of London of burthen of 220 tonnes 6th day of May 1592 for 23s 4d. Per John Harries for Richard Young Custe'.
First edition in English of Waghenaer's "Spieghel der Zeevaerdt." The title-pages and the text are in Wardington state A [cf Wardington article, Map Collector pp.32-25), but the fact that the chart of the North Brittany coast is printed upside down, and that many of the charts in the second part appear to have been hastily printed, either miscentred on the page or over or under inked, suggests that it may well have been assembled from rejected strikes in the early 1590's for Michael Champe, master of the Eagle of London, a merchant ship.
This, the first nautical atlas to be published in England, was compiled by Anthony Ashley, clerk of the Privy Council, apparently ordered by Sir Christopher Hatton, the Lord Chancellor. A copy of the Latin edition "Spieghel der Zeevaerdt" of 1586 had been shown to the Privy council by Lord Charles Howard of Effingham, Lord High Admiral, and the need for a quick translation of the work was seen as paramount for the defence of England as the Spanish threatened to invade. Although the official publication date was October, 1588, it is likely that gatherings of maps were already entrusted to favorite captains before the Armada. The completed copies of this 'secret' atlas were undoubtedly only distributed to preferred officials and captains. From the distinguished library of Trinity House, the headquarters of the official General Lighthouse Authority built in 1796. Koeman IV Wag 13; STC 24931; NMM 3 184. Catalogued by Kate Hunter