Hello/Labas! I'm Andrew Kapochunas (Andrius Kapočiūnas, born in the Lithuanian-Estonian
Displaced Persons camp in Kempten - Allgäu, Germany)
and this site reflects my interest in maps of the
historic Lithuanian area:"The Kingdom of Poland and the Grand Duchy of Lithuania," 1569 - 1791,
followed by the Grand Duchy of Lithuania within the "Polish Republic," 1791-1795. At one point it
covered 400,000 square miles and was the largest country in Europe. According to Steven Seegel, in his
2012 "Mapping Europe's Borderlands," it
"...comprised parts of 14 Central and East European countries
-- Austria, Belarus, the Czech Republic, Estonia, Germany, Hungary, Russia's Kaliningrad Oblast,
Latvia, Lithuania, Moldova, Poland, Romania, Russia, the Slovak Republic, and Ukraine..."
 My focus
here is the area represented today by the three Baltic republics, eastern Poland, the Kaliningrad Oblast,
and Belarus -- if you or your ancestors are from these areas, you will find maps here of interest.

What hasn't existed, before this site, is a single source for:
  • Information on mapmakers of this historic Lithuanian area
  • Historic-Lithuanian-area map images, sorted by date depicted, published from 1507 to 1954
  • Ethnographic maps of the historic Lithuanian area from pre-history to World War II
  • Political maps of Europe showing Lithuania and/or Poland
  • The history that explains the shifting boundaries of Lithuania
  • Sites selling historic and contemporary maps of the historic Lithuanian area
  • Biographies of mapmakers of this area, hotlinked to their maps
  • Global auctions and fairs for historic-Lithuanian-area maps

Totals to date:
  • 3,842 uniquely-colored maps of the historic-Lithuanian area in downloadable jpegs
  •     770 higher-magnification detail images of some of those maps, where the basic image is not high-definition
  •     603 topographic maps from the 19th century onwards showing the area in fine detail
  •     230 historical maps of the Lithuanian area -- maps created and published long after the time depicted
  •     191 political maps of Europe from 900 to 1942 showing Lithuania and/or Poland
  •      176 19th century and earlier town views, plans, and prints
  •      171 ethnographic maps, categorizing peoples by tribe, language and/or religion
  •      127 maps of European Russia, 1562 - 1944, showing Lithuania within and outside the Russian Empire
  •      100 maps of Lithuania Minor / Prussian Lithuania
  •        66 mapmaker biographies, many with illustrations and keys to identifying states of their maps    
  •        53 sea charts of the Baltic, 1547 - 1946, focusing on the seacoasts of Lithuania, Latvia, and Estonia
  •        46 hotlinks to additional map resources, including upcoming map fairs  
  •        25 playing/collectible cards with images of maps
  •          5 articles about maps of the historic Lithuanian area
  •         0 advertisements or items for sale: this site is 100% educational

Adds, September 9 - 15: 8 maps; 1 greatly-improved map image; 1 town view; 1 mapmaker
biography: Châtelain Family

Also: I will be awarding a prize, in Vilnius on November 22, for an original map by a
resident of Lithuania, depicting an environmental problem in Lithuania. Details, in
Lithuanian, at
Kapociunas Map Award

Next update: October 3 (I need to focus on completing my sixth article on Lithuanian maps.)

Where do visitors to this site come from? As of this week, visitors' countries of origin:
USA: 58.2%; 2. Russia: 9.5%; 3. China: 7.8%; 4. Latvia: 3.6%; 5. Other: 20.9%

  • 1564 Ruscelli (cartographer) - Ziletti (publisher): "TAVOLA NVOVA DI PRVSSIA ET DI LIVONIA"   
    (428 KB), Venice, in a new version of the 3rd Edition map from his version of Ptolemy's "Geographia." The    
    first two editions were published 1561 and 1562 by Valgrisi. Maps of the first five Ruscelli editions were   
    printed from the Valgrisi copper plate, based on the maps of Jacopo Gastaldi in Mattioli's 1548 translation of
    Ptolemy's "Geographia." Ruscelli enlarged the maps and included several additions. Note labels for "Esthia,"
    "Livonia," and "Litvania," as well as for Riga, and "Memel," placed east and north of Riga!

  • 1648 J. Blaeu (cartographer/publisher): "MAGNI DVCATVS LITHVANIÆ" (1.5 MB), Amsterdam, in a
    new version dedicated to the Radziwils, Lithuanians who ordered Strubicz to map the area in 1584-95. In     
    1613 Jansonnius published a Gerritsz-engraved copy of that map; Johannes Blaeu copied/published a reduced
    and re-oriented version in 1648 in "Atlas Maior"

  • 1690 Sanson (original mapmaker, in 1655) - Visscher (publisher): "Tabula Nova totius REGNI
    in a new version of the 4th  State of the plate from Visscher's "Atlas minor sive totius orbis terrarum"

  • 1714 Châtelain (compiler/publisher): "CARTE DE POLOGNE AVEC LA CHRONOLOGIE DES ROIS ET
    DES DUCS DE LITHUANIE..," Amsterdam, in two new versions (3.0 MB, 3.2 MB) from the first edition     
    of Volume IV of “Atlas Historique,” with later editions in 1718, 1720 and 1735. The map is based on work by
    Guillaume Delisle. Forget the many incomplete descriptions of this map as being from the seven-volume atlas
    published 1705 - 1739,  with randomly-assigned dates within that range. Volume IV, the only volume of the    
    set with maps of Poland (along with those of Denmark, Sweden, Moscovy and the Ottoman Empire in Europe)
    was published in only four editions, all in Amsterdam. I've had to re-date a number of Châtelain maps based    
    on this information. But given the fact that, where it can be read, the page numbers differ on all the versions,
    they can't all be first edition. I'd need to examine versions from all four editions of Volume IV more accurately
    date the maps, but my research so far finds that the only Volume IVs are in Germany and Holland

  • 1714 Châtelain (compiler/publisher): "NOUVELLE CARTE DU ROYAUME DE POLOGNE..." (3.3 MB),  
    Amsterdam, also from Volume IV of  "Atlas Historique," with additional editions in 1718, 1720 and 1735. This
    map is the one with a "Remarque Historique" box in the upper left corner of the map, and a "Table Des
    Palatinats" across the bottom. Four of the five examples -- the ones with a readable page number -- have
    different page numbers, so, again, they can't all be first edition

  • 1735 Châtelain (compiler/publisher): "CARTE DE POLOGNE, AVEC LA CHRONOLOGIE...Tome. 4   
    No. 18" (9.7 MB), Amsterdam, claimed to be from the 4th and last edition of Volume IV of “Atlas Historique,”
    also published 1714, 1718 and 1720. But is it really from 1735?

  • 1766 [dated] Brion de la Tour (engineer/geographer) - Desnos (geographer/publisher): "Etats de Pologne
    et de Lithuanie...avec Roiaume de Prusse, et le duché de Curlande" Paris, in a greatly-improved
    (from 545 KB to 7.4 MB) version with an elaborately engraved "frame," published in Desnos' "Atlas général."
    Compare with the dated 1765 first edition version

  • 1918 [dated] Skarga-Dobrowolski: "CUDZEGO NIE CHCEMY, SWEGO NIE ODDAMY! (We don't   
    want others' land, we won't give up ours!). "MAPA ZJEDNOCZONEJ POLSKI" (Map of United
    Poland) (2.3 MB). A propaganda broadside with extensive explanations for acceptance of the interesting
    boundaries depicted of "United Poland," at a time when they were still being discussed

  • (TownViewsV-Z):
  • 1639 [dated 1628] Lauro (engraver/publisher): "VILNA LITHVANIÆ METROPOLIS" (858 KB),
    Rome, from the first edition of "Heroico Splendore delle Città del Mondo," published two years after
    Lauro's death
200 metų ąžuolas. 200-
year-old oak in
Mažeikiai, Lithuania,
by Aras Mileska
When viewing this site repeatedly,  ALWAYS RELOAD/REFRESH (or try "Ctrl" + "F5")
1773 Robert Sayer (pubisher): "The Troelfth Cake (also the The Twelfth Cake, The Royal Cake, The Cake of Kings,
from the French: Le gâteau des rois, Polish: Kołacz królewski, Placek królewski)
is a 1773 French allegory and
satire for the First Partition of Poland. It is likely that the original title in English was intended to say "The Twelfth
Cake," alluding to the division of a King Cake
(also called a Twelfth Cake), but corrupted in later reprints.There are
at least four variants of this drawing, most common in the form of an engraving, but also as at least one color
painting; the original was likely drawn by Jean-Michel Moreau le Jeune and engraved by Nicolas Noël Le Mire
(although another source calls them merely the authors of the most famous variant). The Troelfth Cake shows the
rulers of the three countries that participated in the partition tearing apart a map of the Polish-Lithuanian
Commonwealth. The outer figures demanding their share are Catherine II of Russia and Frederick II of Prussia.
Catherine is glaring at her former lover, the Polish king Stanisław August Poniatowski, and (in some variants of the
engraving) Frederick is pointing to Danzig
(Gdańsk) with a sword (although Prussia acquired the territories around
it, Gdańsk still remained with the Commonwealth). The inner figure on the right is the Habsburg Emperor Joseph II.
On his left is the beleaguered Stanisław August Poniatowski, who (in some variants of the engraving) is experiencing
difficulty keeping his crown on his head, and in another, has already lost it. Above the scene is Pheme (with
manifestos from the partitioning powers in the German variant). The drawing gained notoriety in contemporary
Europe; its distribution was banned in several European countries, including France. This ban, and associated
penalties, meant that many variants of this work have been anonymous.
(From Wikipedia)
The mission and intent of this site: 100% educational, 100% non-commercial
Contents ©, LLC, 2019
Images may be reproduced or transmitted for non-commercial use without permission
as long as credit is given to both the original source and this site
The First Partition of the Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth: 1772
French original
Jonathan Potter:
German version
by Johannes
Esaias Nilson.
Jean-Michel Moreau.
From WikiGallery
1697 Philipp Clüver: "Veteris et Novae Regni Poloniae Magniq Ducatus Lithuaniae..." Leyden. From  
"Introductionis in Universam Geographicum," issued 1650 -  mid-1700's.
From Barry Lawrence Ruderman Antique Maps: