The age of the great discoveries, the years between 1500
and 1700, provided mapmakers with more accurate information.
The renewed maps became to be strategic documents. Mapmakers
often had to be sworn to secrecy, they had to work in isolation
and they had to protect their maps with their lives. These
maps were very anxiously protected. When a ship was boarded,
the maps were preserved in a heavy bag which was thrown into
the sea! When a new place was discovered, of course, maps
and borders were changed.
Molls' exact place of origin is unknown.
For many years it was believed that he was born in The Netherlands,
in Amsterdam or Rotterdam but in his will he left all his
possessions to England and Germany and also to his daughter
Henderina Amelia Moll. Because of this, and given the fact
that his name 'Moll' 'is not only common in the Netherlands
but also in Northern Germany, it is possible that he was born
in Germany. The year of birth is considered to be 1645.
It is a fact that he moved to England from the Netherlands.
He settled in London in the year 1678. There he was an engraver,
engaged in, for example, the drawing of the English Atlas
by Moses Pritt. Later he founded his own publishing house.
Well-known are the maps he produced in relation to the Spanish
War of succession, his System of Geography, his Atlas Geographicus
and his Atlas Minor. Very well-known are the maps he made
for Gulliver's Travels of Jonathan Swift. His works were published
after his death in 1732 by Thomas Bowles till 1753.
1645 - 1732
(portret gemaakt door William Stukeley)
The map below was made in 1736 - Londen