|The First Art Newspaper on the Net
||Established in 1996
|| Friday, August 18, 2017
|Rare 415-year-old Wytfliet Atlas stolen from the Royal Library of Sweden recovered at NYC gallery|
The a detail of a world map page of the Wytfliet Atlas is photographed during a news conference, Wednesday, June 27, 2012 in New York. The Wytfliet Atlas stolen a decade ago from the Royal Library of Sweden has been recovered in New York. AP Photo/Mary Altaffer.
By: Ula Ilnytzky, Associated Press
NEW YORK (AP).- A rare atlas stolen a decade ago from the Royal Library of Sweden by one of its chief librarians was recovered in New York and given back to its rightful owner.
Swedish and U.S. authorities showed off the 415-year-old Wytfliet Atlas at a news conference Wednesday. The book, created by Cornelius van Wytfliet and containing the earliest maps of the Americas, had been in the Royal Library collection for more than 300 years before it was stolen. There are only eight other copies worldwide, according to the library.
The atlas was one of 56 rare books stolen by Anders Burius, the chief of the Royal Library's manuscript department, and the first of his haul to be located.
Burius stole the books between 1995 and 2004, nearly the entire time of his employment there, and later committed suicide, said Steven Feldman of the New York firm of Herrick, Feinstein LLP, representing the library.
Burius confessed after learning that the library was undertaking an inventory due to suspicions of theft. He was arrested in 2004 and during temporary release from custody, he slit his wrists and cut a gas line to his kitchen stove, sparking an explosion in his Stockholm neighborhood that resulted in about a dozen injuries.
The 1597 book "has been available to the kings and queens of Sweden," said Greger Bergvall, the library's map librarian. "It's important because it's the only copy of the Wytfliet Atlas in Sweden."
The atlas contains 19 maps, including the first printed map of what was then considered California, correctly depicting a peninsula, Bergvall said. Other ancient maps, he said, portrayed California as an island. The peninsula portion is now Mexico's Baja California.
Bergvall said the atlas survived a devastating 1697 fire that destroyed about 18,000 of the library's 23,000 tomes. Today, he said, the library houses approximately 7 million books.
In June 2011, the Royal Library discovered that the atlas was being offered for sale by Arader Galleries. The New York map dealer, who had been unaware of the book's provenance, returned it to Sotheby's in London, where he had purchased it in early 2000. Feldman said Sotheby's, which had bought it from a London rare book dealer, turned it over to the Royal Library on June 15.
Feldman said Burius sold all the books under an alias and rubbed out markings that would identify their provenance.
Officials said they chose to announce the atlas' recovery in New York because it was discovered there.
The investigation into the 55 other missing books is ongoing and is being assisted by the U.S. attorney's office in Manhattan. They include a 1663 edition of John Donne's poems, Joseph Scott's United States gazetteer from 1795 and a 1651 copy of Thomas Hobbes' philosophical masterwork, "Leviathan."
"We have leads on a number of them," Feldman said, adding that all the stolen volumes had been sold through Ketter Kunst, a German auction house.
"They went all over the world from the auction," he said.
Copyright 2012 The Associated Press.
June 29, 2012
Exhibition at Tate Modern reassesses the work of Norwegian painter Edvard Munch
Christie's to offer Contemporary art at attractive price points in newly re-launched open house sale
"One Life: Amelia Earhart" opens at the National Portrait Gallery in Washington
Rare 415-year-old Wytfliet Atlas stolen from the Royal Library of Sweden recovered at NYC gallery
Two group exhibitions of gallery and guest artists open at Stephen Haller Gallery
Phillips de Pury & Company's London Contemporary Art Evening Auction totals $36,233,420
Pottery fragments 20,000 years old found by Chinese and American scientists in a Chinese cave
Exhibition at Louisiana Museum of Modern Art explores the relationship of architecture to culture and identity
United States Mint in Philadelphia reopens to public with new $3.9 million self-guided tour
Masterpiece London 2012, with a record 5,195 international and UK collectors, triumphs on opening day
Executive director of the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey supports sphere move to 9/11 memorial
First UK solo exhibition of accomplished international artist Jacob Hashimoto opens at Ronchini Gallery
Brooklyn Museum presents the final exhibition in Raw/Cooked featuring artist Ulrike Müller
Study reveals overbuilding of cultural facilities during building boom
Personal collections of Dale Chihuly provide backdrop for progressive American menu at Collections Café
Cindy Sherman, Bruce Nauman, Steven Holl and others elected as new National Academicians
Christie's Auction of the Daphne Guinness Collection achieves $744,285
Statue of firefighter, arson dog visits New York City museum
Most Popular Last Seven Days
1.- Basquiat: A darling of pop culture, but not museums
2.- Edward Hopper House unveils new collection of the American artist's early years and memorabilia
3.- Alice Cooper finds precious Warhol work in storage
4.- Evidence of Babylonian destruction of Jerusalem found at the City of David
5.- Metropolitan Museum of Art exhibits masterpieces by painter Cristóbal de Villalpando
6.- Exhibition on Screen to open its fifth season with Canaletto & the Art of Venice
7.- Gifts to Britain's Queen Elizabeth II go on display at Buckingham Palace
8.- The Museum of Contemporary Art Chicago opens first-ever museum exhibition of Amanda Williams
9.- Exhibition details how Israel's Mossad tracked down and captured Adolf Eichmann
10.- Extraordinary embroidery: Hidden histories of ordinary girls revealed through their sewing
Museums, Exhibits, Artists, Milestones, Digital Art, Architecture, Photography,
Photographers, Special Photos, Special Reports, Featured Stories, Auctions, Art Fairs,
Anecdotes, Art Quiz, Education, Mythology, 3D Images, Last Week, .
|Royalville Communications, Inc|
Tell a Friend
Dear User, please complete the form below in order to recommend the Artdaily newsletter to someone you know.
Please complete all fields marked *.