c1572 Engraved Map of Strasbourg by Braun & Hogenberg


A rare early engraved printed map of Argentoratum or Strasbourg, in France, which dates to around 1572.

The map is by Braun & Hogenberg, after the original drawings by Conrad Morant and has been mounted, framed in black wood and glazed. It is the only representation in this particular projection, of a city, among the 305 cities depicted in various publications of Civitates until its sixth edition of 1617. The reverse has also been glazed in order to see the accompanying text, printed on the reverse of the engraved sheet. Condition is good, but with some creasing and staining to the paper.

Strasbourg is seen from a bird's-eye perspective in a plan view in which the blocks of houses are markedly contracted in favour of the broad streets and squares. The North Tower, 142 m high and built from 1227 to 1439, made the cathedral the tallest Christian church right up to the 19th century. In 1262 the city was declared a Free Imperial City, of which there were seven in total, and profited from many privileges and a certain independence. From the 14th century onwards it formed a major economic and cultural centre, with close links to cities of Upper Italy.

Georg Braun (1541-1622) and Frans Hogenberg (1535-1590) were co-publishers of the monumental Civitates Orbis Terrarum, “the earliest systematic city atlas”, published from 1572 onwards. Designed as a companion to Ortelius’ world atlas the Theatrum, this enormous work, which was expanded to six volumes by 1617 incorporating over 500 plans and views, and must be viewed as one of the most ambitious book producing ventures of all time, and certainly, with Ortelius’ Theatrum and Blaeu’s Atlas Maior among the greatest achievements in the history of cartography.

Size image: 42 x 33.5 cm (16 ½ x 13 ¼ inches)
Size frame: 60 x 51 x 1.2 cm (23 5/8 x 20 x ½ inches)
Weight: 3045 g