Braun and Hogenberg. [Mechelen, Belgium]. "Mechelen." From Braun & Hogenberg's Civitates Orbis Terrarum.
Cologne: Volume III, 1581. 13 x 17 7/8. Copper engraving. Original hand color. Latin text on verso explaining how Charles the Bold, duke of Burgundy, moved the royal court here in 1473. Very good condition. Füssel, ed. Cities of the World. Köln: 2008.
A lovely bird’s eye view from Braun and Hogenberg’s Civitates Orbis Terrarum, one of the most important works from the early days of modern cartography and topographical illustration. Braun, the editor, and Hogenberg, the engraver, worked for over twenty years to produce their “towns of the world,” the first systematic depiction of views of cities throughout the world. This work, issued in six volumes from 1572 to 1617, was a monumental piece of Renaissance learning and was designed to complement Ortelius’ Theatrum Orbis Terrarum, the first modern atlas. These two atlases, both firsts of their type, were in response to a new interest in the nature of the world by the Western European population. This nascent interest was spurred both by the existence of a growing middle class and the relatively new general availability of printed books.
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