Catalog Archive
Auction 174, Lot 332

"[Francis Drake Attacks Cartagena] Franciscus Draco Carthagenam Civitatem Expugnat", Bry, Theodore de

Subject: Cartagena, Colombia

Period: 1595 (circa)

Publication: Grands Voyages, Part VIII

Color: Black & White

8.3 x 6 inches
21.1 x 15.2 cm
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This copper engraving is from a remarkable series of publications, illustrating voyages of discovery and travels of exploration to various parts of the world. The project was begun by Theodore de Bry of Frankfurt, in 1590 and was to continue for another 54 years. They became known collectively as the Grands Voyages (to America and the West Indies) and the Petits Voyages (to the Orient and the East Indies). De Bry died after the first six parts of the Grands Voyages were completed. The project was completed initially by his widow and two sons, Johann Theodore de Bry and Johann Israel de Bry, then by his son-in-law, Matthaus Merian in 1644.

This early bird's-eye view depicts Sir Francis Drake's capture of the Spanish city of Cartagena during his famous West Indies raid of 1585-1586. Drake's fleet fills the harbor and the opposing armies are shown along with a numbered key to the text below the engraving. A large iguana appears in an inset at bottom right. De Bry's engraving is based on Baptista Boazio's original drawing of 1588, which was the first published view of the city. On a full sheet (9.3 x 13.5") with Latin text below that identifies 20 locations on the map. Blank verso.


Condition: B+

Lightly toned with a small spot in the iguana inset, and the right margin trimmed to neatline, as issued. An extensive worm track at top affects the title, stopping at neatline of image.

Estimate: $190 - $220

Sold for: $160

Closed on 9/11/2019