Michigan State University

New in the Map Library: Carte Generale de Canada, 1703


Carte Generale de Canada

Dediée au roy de Danemark par son trés humble et trés obeissant et trés fidele serviteur Lahontan. 1703.

Captain Louis-Armand de Lom d’Arce, Baron de Lahontan of the French marines explored the western Great Lakes. As a colorful and flamboyant figure he caused controversy and comment everywhere he went.

Scholars usually lambaste his cartographic style, which was less accurate than other works of his time. The stylization seems to accentuate relationships and features more so than spatial accuracy, much like a subway map.

Other troubles included his strong criticism of the Jesuits and his mocking and brawling with the Governor in Newfoundland. Armstrong, however, points out that Lahontan ‘is the first to render a caring account of the Indian people’ and points out that he was fluent in the Algonquian language.

This large edition of his map, which accompanied a best-selling book about his travels, is dedicated to the King of Denmark, from Lahontan, ‘his very humble and very obedient and very faithful servant’.

This map was a generous gift of Ron Dietz.

Lahontan's Carte Generale de Canada, 1703
Detail from map

Kershaw 289; McCorkle703.2; Tooley’s Dictionary 3-72; Armstrong, JCW 19

Subscribe to Comments for "New in the Map Library: Carte Generale de Canada, 1703"