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Early Ottoman Lithographed Map of the World: مجموعهء معارف [Mecmua-i maarif]

550.00

 

A first issue of an exceedingly rare ephemeral Ottoman magazine, with possibly largest lithographed map of the world before the appearance of the late Ottoman chromolithographed atlases.

 

8°, 40 pp. with lithographed black and white plates, coloured folding lithographed map, 25 x 39 cm, original green wrappers with lettering on the inner sides (repaired tear in the folding map, wrappers slightly stained with tiny tears in margins, later spine, small folds in margins).

 

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Description

This first issue of an unusual, entirely lithographed ephemeral Ottoman magazine includes information on the universe, accompanied with black and white images, and a larger attractively crudely lithographed and hand-coloured folding map of the world.

The map, based on the older European examples was ambitiously made, yet the information on it was outdated. This is especially visible around the north coasts. Australia is still named New Holland (فلمنك جديد).

This relatively large, difficult to make lithograph was published less than three years before the first official modern lithographed Ottoman atlas, Yeni Atlas, made by Ali Şeref Paşa (also Hafız Ali Eşref) in 1869 (1285) was published in Paris after the author was sent there by the government for schooling.

Our map is a brave attempt to produce a larger lithographic imprint with the available means of printing in a small print shop before the introduction of the modern West European technology to Istanbul some years later.

The success of the magazine was very short lived. All together 6 (or 7) issues were published, all related to geography, and are unobtainable as a set today. Possibly the selling rate were small and the last issues were only published in very small numbers. We could not trace any other editions, except of the first one, on the market.

A set of six or seven magazines is recorded in the İBB Atatürk Library. Worldcat does not mention any institutional examples.

References: BL 0.428, Mil 1956 SB429.

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