Portrait of Fernand Magellan. MAGELLAN, Nicolas DE L'ARMESSIN.

Portrait of Fernand Magellan

Np: circa 1680.

Woodcut engraving, 180 x 130 mm.

From Isaac Bullart's "Académie des Sciences et des Arts…" (François Foppens: Brussels, 1682 & 1695), by the printmaker Nicolas de L'Armessin (signed bottom right).

From Isaac Bullart's "Académie des Sciences et des Arts…" (François Foppens: Brussels, 1682 & 1695), by the printmaker Nicolas de L'Armessin (signed bottom right).

Magellan's expedition was the first to cross the Pacific and the first circumnavigation of the globe. The modern map of the world is witness to this epoch-making event, the name "Pacific" having been bestowed on the great ocean by Magellan himself, while his point of entry is still commemorated by the Strait which bears his name. "No other single voyage has ever added so much to the dimension of the world" (Spate).

The expedition under Magellan set out from San Lucar on 10 August, 1519, in five vessels manned by 265 men, with the intention of sailing westward to the Moluccas. After a suppressed mutiny and a difficult winter in Patagonia, on 18 October, 1520, the ships passed through the strait now named in Magellan's honour, and sailed westward to the Philippines. There Magellan was killed in a skirmish with natives, and further adventures in the East Indies depleted the venture through disease and desertion. Only one ship with eighteen men, under Juan Sebastian Del Cano, landed at Seville on 6 September, 1522. Shortly thereafter all of the crew who could travel went to Valladolid to report to Charles V, including, Antonio Pigafetta., one of the chroniclers of the voyage whose account did not appear until 1525, in Paris, and was not wholly published until the late eighteenth century."There was none of the prophetic mysticism of Columbus in the makeup of the great Portuguese. Magellan was distinctly a man of action, instant, resolute, enduring… The first navigation of the Straits of Magellan was a far more difficult problem of seamanship than crossing the Atlantic… Columbus's voyage was over in thirty-five days; but Magellan's had been gone a year and weathered a subarctic winter before the real task began - the voyage over a trackless waste of waters exactly three times as long as the first crossing of the Atlantic… Magellan is to be ranked as the first navigator of ancient or modern times, and his voyage the greatest single human achievement on the sea" (Bourne, Spain in America, ch. ix).

Condition Report: Very good.

Price (AUD): $400.00

US$282.51   Other currencies

Ref: #3002907

Condition Report