Auction 154, Lot 520

"Moguntia, Germaniae Metropolis, ad Rheni... [on sheet with] Herbipolis, Comuniter Wirtzburg... [and] Sedunum, Primaria & Metropolitica Valesice Urbs...", Braun & Hogenberg

Subject: Mainz & Wurzburg, Germany & Sion, Switzerland

Period: 1575 (circa)

Publication: Civitates Orbis Terrarum, Vol. I

Color: Hand Color

18.9 x 13.3 inches
48 x 33.8 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.

Three plans on one sheet: Mainz, Wurzburg, Sitten. At top is a panoramic view of Mainz as viewed from across the Rhine River. At lower left is a bird's-eye plan of Wurzburg with the Fortress Marienberg overlooking the Main River. At lower right is a plan-view of Sion (Sitten), a small village in Switzerland on the Rhone River. The Valere castle and the Chateau de Tourbillon are graphically shown overlooking the village. French manuscript text on verso.

References: Fussel, p. 100.

Condition: A

Superb color on watermarked paper with minor show-through of manuscript text on verso and an edge tear confined to the bottom blank margin.

Estimate: $400 - $475

Sold for: $400

Closed on 9/16/2015