Winter 2009–2010

Introductory Image

Devised by the famously never-married Mademoiselle de Scudéry during the winter of 1653–1654 and published in her novel Clélie, this map shows the land of Tendre (Tenderness) with its three rivers Estime, Reconnaissance, and Inclination. From the town of Nouvelle Amitié, one can travel swiftly along the river Inclination to the charming town of Tendre sur Inclination. Journeying over land through towns such as Complaisance and Assiduité, one arrives at Tendre sur Estime, and one gets to Tendre sur Reconnaissance by way of Sincerité, Grand Coeur, and other amenable villages. However, farther from the river’s wholesome waters, towns such as Indiscretion and Perfidie lead to the tempestuous Mer d’Inimitié, and wandering through Negligence on through Oubli one reaches the still Lac d’Indifference. Because it is hazardous for a woman to go beyond the limits of friendship, off the shore of Tendre we see the rocky-shoaled Mer Dangereuse beyond which lies Terres Inconnues. One of the earliest examples of sentimental cartography, Scudéry’s map offers a “morale de l’Amitié” that became a major reference point for debates about friendship and love in the following decades. Caption by Alexander Nagel.
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