"Traiectum ad Mosam, Urbs et Natura Loci...", Braun & Hogenberg
Subject: Maastricht, Netherlands
Period: 1575 (circa)
Publication: Civitates Orbis Terrarum, Vol. II
Color: Hand Color
19.3 x 14.4 inches
49 x 36.6 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 fine view of the city of Maastricht is taken from the east and depicts the two sides of this strategically located city. The east bank, or Wyck, in the foreground is joined to the larger portion of the city by a stone bridge crossing the Meuse River. In addition to the fine detail of the city's buildings, the surrounding farms are also intricately depicted. A key at bottom locates 41 important sites. Adorned by two decorative cartouches and an angel holding up three coats of arms.
References: Fussel, pp. 158-159.
Light toning with a few small spots and one tiny hole along the centerfold at bottom only visible when held to light. Faint text show-through with two printer's creases at right.