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Neptune Occidental. A Compleat Pilot for the West-Indies, including the British Channel, Bay of Biscay, and all the Atlantic Islands by  Thomas (1719-1771) JEFFERYS - 1781 - from Donald Heald Rare Books and Biblio.com

Neptune Occidental. A Compleat Pilot for the West-Indies, including the British Channel, Bay of Biscay, and all the Atlantic Islands

by JEFFERYS, Thomas (1719-1771)

Condition: See description


London: printed for R. Sayer and J. Bennett, 1781. Folio. (21 1/2 x 15 3/8 inches). Letterpress title with integral list of twenty-five maps. 25 engraved maps on 28 sheets (1 folding map on 3 joined sheets, 1 folding map on 2 joined sheets, 21 double-page maps, 2 single-page maps), mounted on guards throughout. Expertly bound to style in half 18th-century diced russia over contemporary marbled paper-covered boards A rare early edition of the West Indies Pilot. Thomas Jefferys was one of the leading English cartographers of the 18th century. From about 1750, he published a series of maps of the Americas, that were among the most significant produced in the period. As Geographer to the Prince of Wales, and after 1761, Geographer to the King, Jefferys was well-placed to have access to the best surveys conducted in America, and many of his maps held the status of "official work". Jefferys died on 20th November 1771. In 1775, Sayer and Bennett published the late Thomas Jefferys famed West Indian Atlas , which contained both maps and sea charts of the region. Concurrently, as evidenced by their catalogue of 1775, Sayer & Bennett issued a West India Pilot , which contained only the sea charts and was intended specifically for navigation. The first issue of the Pilot contains charts dated 1775 or earlier; subsequent issues included a new title: Neptune Occidental. A Compleat Pilot for the West-Indies . The present third issue contains an updated chart of the Bay of Biscay (dated February 1777, as in the second issue), and includes for the first time an updated chart of the English Channel (dated May 1781). With the exceptions noted above, all the charts are dated 20 February 1775. The 25 engraved charts were designed to give the information necessary to a navigator wishing to sail from England to the West Indies. The core of the Pilot, and its most impressive aspect, is the chart made up of 16 double-page sheets of the whole of the Caribbean, together with a double-page index map. Preceding these charts is a very fine three-sheet map of the English Channel, on the following six charts the atlas then follows a course through the Bay of Biscay, across the Atlantic (via the Azores, the Canaries, the Cape Verde Islands and Bermuda) to the Caribbean. In the middle of the Caribbean section is a single page map of The Turk's Islands, and the atlas finishes with three charts of the northern coast of South America. Five of the charts feature what is now mainland United States: number 8 ... A Compleat Chart of the West Indies (1775); number 9 The Western Coast of Louisiana and the Coast of New Leon (1775); number 10 The Coast of West Florida and Louisiana (1775); number 11 The Peninsula and Gulf of Florida ... with the Bahama Islands (1775); number 14 The Island of Cuba with part of the Bahama Banks and the Martyrs (1775). Various issues of the Pilot, some with significant cartographic changes, were issued by Sayer and Bennett and subsequently by Laurie and Whittle into the 19th century. All copies are rare, but particularly the early issues. Indeed, Sabin cites only editions after 1788, apparently unaware of the present or earlier issues and no copies of any 18th century edition appear in the modern auction records. Cf. David Gestetner "Thomas Jefferys: West-India Atlas, 1775" in Map Forum, issue 7, pp.40-48 & issue 8, pp.30-35; cf. Sabin 35956; cf. Phillips III, 3945.


  • Bookseller: Donald Heald Rare Books US (US)
  • Bookseller Inventory #: 21735
  • Title: Neptune Occidental. A Compleat Pilot for the West-Indies, including the British Channel, Bay of Biscay, and all the Atlantic Islands
  • Author: JEFFERYS, Thomas (1719-1771)
  • Format/binding:Folio
  • Book condition: Used
  • Quantity available: 1
  • Publisher: printed for R. Sayer and J. Bennett
  • Place: London
  • Date published: 1781
  • Keywords: 18th century
  • Bookseller catalogs: Atlases & Cartography; Americana & Canadiana;


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