Le Neptune François

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Le Neptune François is one of the most elaborately decorated atlases ever published. Printed in Amsterdam by Pierre Mortier in 1693, this sea atlas reproduced the latest maps of the coast of western Europe by the French Académie Royale des Sciences.

The frontispiece of the atlas features a hand-colored engraving by Jan van Vianen, depicting Neptune riding a seashell-shaped chariot drawn by four hippocampi, mythical creatures with the upper body of a horse and the lower body of a fish.

The god of the sea is escorted by tritons, who command the waves by blowing their conch shells. In the background, an armada sails to war amid cannon fire and lightning.
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Size (inch) 12
Weight Light
Weight (mg/sq in) 68
Made in France