Catalog Archive
Auction 168, Lot 456

"Plan de Narva Assiege par 80000. Moscovites, qui Furent Attaques et Deffaits... ", Fer, Nicolas de

Subject: Narva, Estonia

Period: 1701 (dated)

Publication: L'Atlas Curieux ou le Monde…

Color: Hand Color

13.3 x 8.9 inches
33.8 x 22.6 cm
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This scarce military plan depicts the Siege of Narva, which lies in present-day Estonia, on the Russian border. Under Swedish rule at the end of the 17th century, Narva underwent significant rebuilding of its defense structures, planned by Swedish military engineer Erik Dahlbergh. Subsequently Narva became one of the most heavily fortified cities in Northern Europe, just in time for the Great Northern War. In November 1700, during the Battle of Narva, Swedish forces maintained control of the city despite being greatly outnumbered by Russian forces. Narva's powerful defense structures are depicted in this bird's-eye plan, along with the advancing Russian battalions. The title erroneously dates the battle as November 30, 1705. A large cartouche at right gives a brief history of the battle, and is adorned with Medusa, the Swedish coat of arms, and a lion (representing Sweden) tearing the wing off a large bird (representing Russia). Engraved by Herman van Loon.

Nicolas de Fer held the title of Geographer at Louis XIV's court. He was one of the most prolific publishers of plans of European cities in the late seventeenth century.

References: Pastoureau, Fer IA [45].

Condition: A

A nice impression on watermarked paper with a soft crease at top right.

Estimate: $220 - $300


Closed on 6/6/2018