Catalog Archive
Auction 164, Lot 499

"Freti Danici or Sundt Accuratiss Delineatio", Braun & Hogenberg

Subject: Oresund Strait

Period: 1590 (circa)

Publication: Civitates Orbis Terrarum, Vol. IV

Color: Hand Color

18.8 x 13 inches
47.8 x 33 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 bird's-eye view shows the Danish city of Helsingor and the Swedish City of Helsingborg and the narrow strait between these two countries which is an important route to the Baltic Sea. The Oresund strait is filled with sailing ships, several engaged in battle. Also shown is the island of Ven (Hvena) with a depiction of Tycho Brahe's famous Uraniborg Observatory, the world's first observatory. At bottom left is an inset plan "Interior Arcis magnificentia," which shows the Kronborg castle in greater detail. French text on verso.

References: Fussel, p. 303-05.

Condition: A

A lovely example with two tiny holes in the image and light toning along the edges of the sheet.

Estimate: $400 - $500

Sold for: $425

Closed on 9/13/2017