Old Map of Barbary by Visscher, 1690: Barbarians, Algiers, Tunis, Cairo, Canary Islands, Sahara Desert
Old Map of Barbary by Visscher, 1690: Barbarians, Algiers, Tunis, Cairo, Canary Islands, Sahara Desert
Old Map of Barbary by Visscher, 1690: Barbarians, Algiers, Tunis, Cairo, Canary Islands, Sahara Desert
Old Map of Barbary by Visscher, 1690: Barbarians, Algiers, Tunis, Cairo, Canary Islands, Sahara Desert

Old Map of Barbary by Visscher, 1690: Barbarians, Algiers, Tunis, Cairo, Canary Islands, Sahara Desert

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Immerse yourself in the world of the past with the 'Barbaria' map, a captivating historical artifact dating back to 1690. This map, meticulously crafted by Nicolaes Visscher II, offers a detailed view of Barbary, a region that encompasses the larger modern day area of North Africa. 'Barbaria', translating to 'Barbary' in English, provides a clear indication of the geographical focus of this map. As a product of the Dutch Golden Age of mapmaking, it stands as a testament to the extraordinary skill and precision of its creators, offering a window into the past that is as educational as it is fascinating.

The 'Barbaria' map is more than a mere geographical representation. It is a historical document that reveals the political divisions of its time, providing a vivid picture of the past. From Algiers to Tunis, from Cairo to the Canary Islands, each city and landmark tells a story of the political and cultural landscape of the late 17th century. The map also offers a detailed depiction of the Sahara Desert, one of the world's largest and hottest deserts.

The 'Barbaria' map showcases the beauty of cartography and the artistry of its creators. Each hand-colored engraved map on the sheet serves as a testament to the mapmaker's skill and attention to detail. It covers Northern Africa and the Mediterranean, with the upper panel showing almost the entire northern coast of Africa, and the lower panel providing a detailed depiction of the area in the vicinity of present-day Algiers. The map shows political boundaries, cities, towns, waterways, canals, landmarks, wildlife, and mountains, all brought to life through the decorative title cartouche and the pictorial relief.

The 'Barbaria' map is a piece of history, a work of art, and a tool for education. It provides a unique perspective on the world as it was known in 1690, offering insights into the political, geographical, and cultural realities of the time. Whether you are a history enthusiast, a cartography aficionado, or simply someone who appreciates the beauty of old maps, the 'Barbaria' map is sure to captivate your interest and ignite your imagination.

Some of the significant locations shown on this map:

Barbary Coast

  • Algiers: Known as El Djazaïr in Arabic, it was the largest city and capital of the Ottoman Regency of Algiers, a major center of the Barbary pirates.
  • Tunis: Capital of the Ottoman Beylik of Tunis, it was a major center of trade and culture in the Mediterranean.
  • Tripoli: Capital of the Ottoman Karamanli dynasty, it was a major port and center of the Barbary pirates.
  • Benghazi: An important city in the Ottoman province of Tripolitania, it was a hub of trade and culture.
  • Derna: A key port city in the Ottoman province of Cyrenaica, it was known for its bustling marketplace.

Egypt

  • Cairo: Known as Al-Qāhirah, it was the capital of the Ottoman Eyalet of Egypt and the largest city in Africa.
  • Alexandria: Known as Al-Iskandariyya, it was a major port city and cultural hub in the Ottoman Eyalet of Egypt.
  • Damietta: Known as Damiyat, it was a key port and trade center in the Ottoman Eyalet of Egypt.
  • Mansoura: Known as Al-Mansurah, it was a major city in the Ottoman Eyalet of Egypt, known for its textile industry.
  • Rosetta: Known as Rashid, it was a key port city in the Ottoman Eyalet of Egypt.

Canary Islands

  • Santa Cruz de Tenerife: Known as Santa Cruz, it was the largest city in the Canary Islands, a Spanish colony.
  • Las Palmas: Known as Las Palmas de Gran Canaria, it was a major city in the Canary Islands, a Spanish colony.
  • San Cristóbal de La Laguna: Known as La Laguna, it was a key city in the Canary Islands, a Spanish colony.
  • Arrecife: A key port city in the Canary Islands, a Spanish colony.
  • Puerto del Rosario: Known as Puerto Cabras, it was a major city in the Canary Islands, a Spanish colony.

Sahara Desert

  • Timbuktu: A key city in the Songhai Empire, it was a major center of Islamic culture and scholarship.
  • Gao: Capital of the Songhai Empire, it was a major center of trade and culture.
  • Djenne: A key city in the Songhai Empire, it was known for its Great Mosque, a UNESCO World Heritage Site.
  • Agadez: A key city in the Sultanate of Agadez, it was a major center of the trans-Saharan trade.
  • Ouargla: A key city in the Ottoman Regency of Algiers, it was a major center of the trans-Saharan trade.

Notable Natural Phenomena

  • Nile River: The longest river in the world, it was a key artery of trade and transportation.
  • Atlas Mountains: A major mountain range in North Africa, it is known for its unique flora and fauna.
  • Sahara Desert: The largest hot desert in the world, it is known for its vast sand dunes and unique ecosystems.
  • Mediterranean Sea: A major sea connected to the Atlantic Ocean, it was a key route for trade and exploration.
  • Strait of Gibraltar: A narrow strait that connects the Atlantic Ocean to the Mediterranean Sea, it was a key strategic location for naval powers.

Notable Historical Events (1600-1690)

  • The Expulsion of the Moriscos (1609-1614): A major event in Spanish history, it involved the forced conversion and expulsion of the Moriscos (Muslims who had been forcibly converted to Christianity) from Spain.
  • The Battle of Ksar El Kebir (1578): A decisive battle in Moroccan history, it resulted in the death of King Sebastian of Portugal and led to a succession crisis in Portugal.
  • The Cretan War (1645–1669): A major conflict between the Ottoman Empire and the Venetian Republic, it resulted in the Ottoman conquest of Crete.

Please double check the images to make sure that a specific town or place is shown on this map. You can also get in touch and ask us to check the map for you.

This map looks great at all sizes: 12x16in (30.5x41cm), 16x20in (40.5x51cm), 18x24in (45.5x61cm), 24x30in (61x76cm), 32x40in (81.5x102cm), 40x50in (102x127cm), 48x60in (122x153cm) and 56x70in (142x178cm), but it looks even better when printed large.

I can create beautiful, large prints of this map up to 90in (229cm). Please get in touch if you're looking for larger, customised or different framing options.

The model in the listing images is holding the 16x20in (40.5x51cm) version of this map.

The fifth listing image shows an example of my map personalisation service.

If you’re looking for something slightly different, check out my collection of the best old maps of Europe and European cities to see if something else catches your eye.

Please contact me to check if a certain location, landmark or feature is shown on this map.

This would make a wonderful birthday, Christmas, Father's Day, work leaving, anniversary or housewarming gift for someone from the areas covered by this map.

This map is available as a giclée print on acid free archival matte paper, or you can buy it framed. The frame is a nice, simple black frame that suits most aesthetics. Please get in touch if you'd like a different frame colour or material. My frames are glazed with super-clear museum-grade acrylic (perspex/acrylite), which is significantly less reflective than glass, safer, and will always arrive in perfect condition.

My standard frame is a black wood frame. It is simple and quite modern looking. On maps up to 36 inches (91cm) the frame is 2-3cm (0.75in to 1in) wide. I use thicker frames on larger maps - usually between 35 and 60mm (1.4in to 2.4in).

In all cases I use super-clear acrylic (perspex/acrylite) for the frame glass. It's lighter and safer than glass - and it looks better, as the reflectivity is lower.

All frames are provided "ready to hang", with either a string or brackets on the back. Very large frames will have heavy duty hanging plates and/or a mounting baton. If you have any questions, please get in touch.

See some examples of my framed maps and framed canvas maps.

A few different frame colours are available for free (black, brown, white and natural). Custom framing and mounting/matting is available if you're looking for something else.

Alternatively, I can also supply old maps on canvas, foam board, cotton rag and other materials.

If you want to frame your map yourself, please read my map size guide first.

For most orders, delivery time is about 3 working days. Personalised and custom made maps take longer, as I have to do the personalisation and send it to you for approval, which usually takes a day or two.

Please note that for larger framed orders (over 40in/100cm), and some other framed sizes, the delivery time will be closer to 7-10 days.

If you need your order to arrive by a certain date, please contact me before you order so that we can find the best way of making sure you get your order in time.

I have specialist printing and framing facilities in 17 countries around the world. This means your map will be made locally, which cuts down on delivery time and reduces the chance of your map being damaged during delivery. There won't be any extra taxes or duties to pay, and we'll put less CO2 into the air.

All of my maps are well packaged and sent in a rugged tube if unframed, or surrounded by foam if framed.

I try to send out all maps within 1 or 2 days of receiving your order, though some products (like face masks or mugs) can take longer to make.

If you select Express Delivery at checkout your order we will prioritise your order and send it out by 1-day courier (Fedex, DHL, UPS, Parcelforce).

We can sometimes do next-day delivery if you order before 10am. But usually it's best to contact me first before you order.

Read my full delivery and local production guide

My maps are extremely high quality reproductions of original maps.

I source original, extremely rare maps from libraries, auction houses and private collections around the world, restore them at my London workshop, and then use specialist giclée inks and printers to create beautiful maps that look even better than the original.

My maps are printed on acid-free archival matte (not glossy) paper that feels very high quality and almost like card. In technical terms the paper weight/thickness is 10mil/200gsm. It's perfect for framing.

I print with Epson ultrachrome giclée UV fade resistant pigment inks - some of the best inks you can find.

I can also make maps on canvas, cotton rag and other exotic materials.

Learn more about how the Unique Maps Co. sources and restores old maps

Map personalisation

If you're looking for the perfect anniversary or housewarming gift, I can personalise your map to make it truly unique. For example, I can add a short message, or highlight an important location, or add your family's coat of arms.

The options are almost infinite. Please see my map personalisation page for some wonderful examples of what's possible.

To order a personalised map, select "personalise your map" before adding it to your basket.

Get in touch if you're looking for more complex customisations and personalisations.

If you are not happy with your unique map for any reason, contact me for a no-quibble refund.

I am very confident you will like your old map. I have been doing this since 1984. I'm a 5-star Etsy seller. I have sold tens of thousands of maps and have over 1,500 real 5-star reviews.

I use a unique process to restore my maps that is massively time consuming and labour intensive. Hunting down the original maps can take months. I use state of the art and eye-wateringly expensive technology to scan and restore the maps. As a result, I guarantee my maps are a cut above the rest - that's why I can offer a no-quibble refund.

Almost all of my maps look amazing at large sizes (200cm, 6.5ft+) and I can frame and deliver them to you as well, via special oversized courier. Contact me to discuss your specific needs.

Fill in the form below, message me on WhatsApp, or call the workshop on (718) 412-1214

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