Auction 129, Lot 561

"Santander", Braun & Hogenberg

Subject: Spain

Period: 1575 (circa)

Publication: Civitates Orbis Terrarum

Color: Hand Color

13.6 x 12.5 inches
34.5 x 31.8 cm

Braun & Hogenberg's Civitates Orbis Terrarum or "Cities of the World" was published between 1572 and 1617. Within the six volumes, 531 towns and cities were depicted on 363 plates, providing the reader with the pleasures of travel without the attendant discomforts. Braun wrote in the preface to the third book, "What could be more pleasant than, in one's own home far from all danger, to gaze in these books at the universal form of the earth . . . adorned with the splendor of cities and fortresses and, by looking at pictures and reading the texts accompanying them, to acquire knowledge which could scarcely be had but by long and difficult journeys?" Braun and Hogenberg incorporated an astonishing wealth of information into each scene beyond the city layout and important buildings. The plates provide an impression of the economy and prominent occupations, and illustrate local costumes, manners and customs.

This lovely view shows the city and harbor of Santander on the Atlantic coast of Spain. Santander was an important Castillian port in the latter part of the Middle Ages, and grew in importance when trade with the New World increased in the 16th century. The view shows several ships in the harbor with a group of people in the foreground displaying the customary dress of the region. Behind the harbor rises the Iglesia colegial de los Cuerpos Santos, a 13th century cathedral. Latin text on verso

References: Fussel p. 144; Manasek #29.

Condition: A

There is a paper repair in the blank margin where the paper is thin. The image is fine.

Estimate: $600 - $700

Sold for: $475

Closed on 9/23/2009