Catalog Archive
Auction 190, Lot 455

"Fribergum Misinae", Braun & Hogenberg

Subject: Freiberg, Germany

Period: 1575 (published)

Publication: Civitates Orbis Terrarum, Vol. II

Color: Hand Color

17.9 x 13.1 inches
45.5 x 33.3 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 is one of the earliest, detailed bird's-eye views of Freiberg in Saxony showing the city walls and surrounding countryside. A costumed couple and the map key appear in the foreground with the coat of arms in the upper left. Latin text on verso.

References: Fussel, pp. 168-69; Van der Krogt (Vol. IV) #1385.

Condition: B+

An early impression with full contemporary color on a sheet with a coat of arms watermark. There is light toning and offsetting along the centerfold, marginal soiling, and archival repairs to centerfold separations at top and bottom and to a couple of short cracks at far right.

Estimate: $275 - $350

Sold for: $180

Closed on 11/16/2022