Rare First Plate
"Flandria", Ortelius, Abraham
Subject: Western Belgium
Period: 1573 (published)
Publication: Theatrum Orbis Terrarum
Color: Hand Color
19.6 x 15.2 inches
49.8 x 38.6 cm
This is the rare, first of three plates of Flanders that Ortelius published in his monumental Theatrum Orbis Terrarum. The map extends from Zeeland and Antwerp in the north to Calais in the south, and as far east as Douai and Brussels. Rivers, forests, political boundaries, and hundreds of towns are shown, with the largest cities marked with miniature bird's eye views. The map is embellished with galleons engaged in battle, a sea monster, and an allegorical female figure holding a bundle of grains and the coat of arms of Flanders. The map is enclosed in an elegantly engraved egg-shaped border. Latin text on verso. Van den Broecke estimates that fewer than 75 copies of this map were printed for the 1573 edition.
References: Van den Broecke #75.
Nice impression and color on watermarked paper with one tiny hole in image, a few small abrasions, and a professionally repaired centerfold separation. Expertly remargined all around with repairs to a few tears and chips entering border of map with excellent facsimile work of neatline in a few spots and decorative border at top and bottom left.