The Marañon or Amazon River with the Mission of the Society of Jesus


This map of the Amazon River is by Samuel Fritz (1654-1728), a Jesuit missionary who mapped the basin of the Amazon River. Born in the province of Bohemia (now part of the Czech Republic), Fritz became a priest in 1673. He was sent to Quito in present-day Ecuador as a missionary in 1684 and spent the next 40 years ministering to the native people of the Upper Marañon region. He began mapping the region as part of a project to clarify the borders of missionary lands, Spanish lands, and Portuguese lands. He later undertook a project to chart the course of the Amazon. Despite having no training as a cartographer and using only very primitive instruments, Fritz completed a relatively accurate chart of the area. He was the first to follow the Marañon, a tributary of the Amazon, to its source. This map was first printed in Quito in 1707 and later extensively copied in Europe.

Date Created

Subject Date

Publication Information

Juan de Narvaes, Quito, Ecuador


Title in Original Language

El gran rio Marañon o Amazonas con la Mission de la Compañia de Iesus

Additional Subjects

Type of Item

Physical Description

1 map ; 31 x 39 centimeters

Last updated: September 18, 2015