Catalog Archive

Auction 156, Lot 468

"Civitatis Leodiensis Genuina Delineatio, Cuius, Typum Liberalissime Nobis Communicavit...", Braun & Hogenberg

Subject: Liege, Belgium

Period: 1575 (circa)

Publication: Civitates Orbis Terrarum, Vol. I

Color: Hand Color

18.9 x 13 inches
48 x 33 cm
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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 superb bird's-eye view of Liege depicts the picturesque city along the Meuse River. A numbered key at bottom identifies 64 locations, including the Collegiate Church of St. Bartholomew (32) and the Church of St. Martin (4). The title cartouche dedicates the view the Gerhard von Groesbeck, the bishop of Liege. The city's coat of arms is at top right. Manuscript French text on verso.

References: Fussel, p. 65-67.

Condition: B+

Superb impression and color on watermarked paper with minor soiling and light show-through of manuscript text on verso.

Estimate: $550 - $700

Sold for: $300

Closed on 2/17/2016