The Holy Land or Promised Land (Formerly Palestine), Recently Depicted and Published


Nicolaus (also spelled Nicolas, Nicolaes) Visscher was the son of a Dutch master painter and mapmaker, Claes Janszoon Visscher, and was known for the exquisite artistry of the maps he produced. In the 16th and 17th centuries the Dutch were involved in a race against Portugal for control of the spice trade. The antipathy between the two states ran especially deep because of the alliance of Portugal with the Kingdom of Spain, with whom the Dutch had been embroiled in the Eighty Years' War (1566-1648). Only one year before the creation of this map, the Dutch had ousted the Portuguese from Sri Lanka and were engaged in a flurry of cartographic endeavors related to their commercial and imperial expansion. Although the Holy Land belonged to the Ottoman Empire at this time, the Dutch had a foothold in Persia and designs for further expansion in the Near East.

Date Created

Subject Date

Publication Information

Nicolaes Visscher, Amsterdam


Title in Original Language

Terra sancta sive promissionis, olim Palestina recens delineata, et in lucem edita per Nicolaum Visscher

Additional Subjects

Type of Item

Physical Description

1 map ; 47 x 57 centimeters

Last updated: September 25, 2015