British Admiralty Hydrographical Office

Antique British Chart of Gran Canaria island

Gran Canaria surveyed by Lieut. William Arlett R.N.

DESCRIPTION: Antique, used 1899 British Admiralty nautical chart of the island of Gran Canaria one of the Canary Islands of Spain, lying off the coast of northwest Africa. In 1900 the population of the entire group of Canary Islands was estimated at almost 360,000 individuals with the main exports consisting of wine, spirits, potatoes, tobacco, bananas, and cochineal.

Based on a survey by Lieutenant William Arlett (d. 1839) of the Royal Navy aboard the ship Aetna. With several manuscript notations and course plots in pencil, attesting to a well-used life aboard ship. Arlett's notes on his survey of the Canary Islands describes his impression of the island and the survey method of triangulation, employed across the entire island :
"On the 14th December we arrived at Port la Luz in the island of La Gran Canaria, the Great Canary. This island is nearly circular and about twenty-four miles in diameter, or seventy-five in circumference. Its is mountainous, and the coast, gereally speaking, precipitous. " …

"A base having been measured, a triangulation was carried completely round the island, whence the soundings as well as the coast line were laid down trigonometrically. " (Arlett, W. The Journal of the Royal Geographic Society of London. Volume 6. 1836.)

Highly detailed topography in the interior of the island. Includes these key features: Las Palmas, the capital city; la Luz Harbor; Ayrenaga Bay; Tenefe Point; Romeral Castle (Castillo); and Morro Colchas point with its lighthouse. With an inset plan of Maspalomas Anchorage and two inset coastal elevation views. Lighthouses are highlighted in yellow.

The chart was first published at the Admiralty in London on June 26th, 1848. Sold by J.D. Potter, agent for sale of Admiralty Charts, 14-5 Minories. Verso with MS chart collation number "5b". Number 1869. Numerous large and small corrections, the last correction in 1899.

CREATOR: British Admiralty Hydrographical Office



BODY OF WATER: Atlantic Ocean

CONDITION: Good.  On heavy wove paper, rolled, not folded. Dirty, grubby, stained in margins. One tiny pinhole, repaired from verso archivally.

COLORING: Navigational aids highlighted in yellow. Otherwise no color.

ENGRAVER: J. & C. Walker

SIZE: 24 " x 18 "


PRICE: $275


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