Sanderus catalogue

Old antique plan of Bilbao, by Georg Braun & Frans Hogenberg.

Item number:26703
Category:Antique maps > europe > spain and portugal
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Price: 950 Euro ($1064 / £845.5)
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Bilvao. En, Spectator Benevole, Magnifica Hispaniae Civitas Bilbao ... - Georg Braun & Frans Hogenberg, 1576.

Old, antique map - bird's-eye view of Bilbao, by Georg Braun & Frans Hogenberg.

Date of the first edition: 1575
Date of this map: 1576

Copper engraving, printed on paper.
Size (not including margins): 25.5 x 48.5cm (9.9 x 18.9 inches)
Verso text: German
Condition: Original coloured, some browning along centrefold.
Condition Rating: A
References: Van der Krogt 4, #501, State 1; Fauser, #1492, Taschen, Br. Hog., p.148.

From: Beschreibung und Contrafactur von den vornembsten Stetten der Welt. Dass ander Buch. Köln, 1576. (Van der Krogt 4, 41:2.2)

TRANSLATION OF CAPTION: See, benevolent spectator, the magnificent Spanish city of Bilbao, called by others as it were Bellum Vadum ("beautiful ford") Bilvao; this is why they write the second syllable with v. Founded by Didacus Lopez de Hazo, prince of the Cantabrans, around 1300. Drawn charmingly and true to nature by Hogenberg's hand, it is put before your eyes as it looked in 1544.

COMMENTARY BY BRAUN: "Bilbao lies on a plain, two miles from the sea, and its air is salubrious and of pleasant temperature. On the land side are the mountains [...], on the other the little town of Portugalete, where a great river links Bilbao with the sea. [...] Among other things precious wool is exported from here, from which fine cloth is made in the Netherlands. It is known that fifty great ships are loaded with this wool each year and fifty thousand sacks of wool are exported."

The view shows Bilbao from the southeast; in the distance the town of Portugalete can be seen on the estuary of the Nervion in the Bay of Biscay. Diego López V de Haro founded Bilbao on 15 June 1300. The bay known as Ria cuts deep into the land and links Bilbao with the Gulf of Biscay via Portugalete. It is navigable due to its depth, which made it possible to build a harbour in Bilbao that offered far better protection than coastal harbours, and led to the town becoming one of Castile's trade centres; in particular, Merino wool was exported to northern Europe from here. The church of San Anton adjoins the San Anton bridge (on the right). The Gothic cathedral of Santiago is visible in the middle of the city. (Taschen)

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