The Dutch cartographer Willem Janszoon Blaeu was born in Alkmaar in 1571. From 1594 to 1596 Blaeu studied astronomy and cartography under his teacher Tycho Brahe and in 1603 moved to Amsterdam. There Blaeu began to produce globes, land and sea maps and a world map, which was published in 1605.
In 1633 Willem Janszoon Blaeu was appointed the official cartographer of the Dutch East India Company. The cartographer Bleau died in Amsterdam in 1638. His son Joan Blaeu (1596-1673) took over his father's business. In 1672 the workshop was destroyed by a fire in Amsterdam, which also killed Blaeu's son.