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Old antique chart of Mons by Georg Braun & Frans Hogenberg

Item number:16462
Category:Antique maps > europe > Belgium - Cities
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Price: 400 Euro ($444 / £352)
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Mons, Hannonia Urbs PotenS & Ampla, ... - Georg Braun & Frans Hogenberg, 1581-88.


Old, antique bird's-eye view plan of Mons, by Georg Braun and Frans Hogenberg.

Date of the first edition: 1851
Date of this map: 1581-88

Copper engraving, printed on paper.
Size (not including margins): 35 x 46.5cm (13.7 x 18.1 inches)
Verso text: Latin
Condition: Excellent, superb old colour.
Condition Rating: A+
References: Van der Krogt 4, #2817, state 1; Fauser, #9042; Taschen, Br. Hog., p.231.

From: Civitates Orbis Terrarum. . Liber tertius. Köln, G. Kempen, 1581-88. (Koeman, B&H3)

TRANSLATION OF CARTOUCHE TEXT: Mons, the powerful and wealthy city in Hainaut, was endowed with imperial privileges by Charlemagne and the River Trulla flows around it; it is well protected by its fortifications and natural setting; the civilized and affluent population trades mostly in livestock.

COMMENTARY BY BRAUN: "It is said that Emperor Charlemagne made Mons his capital and granted it imperial privileges. And he is supposed to have taken its name from its setting, which is namely hilly. Mons has grown substantially in numbers of inhabitants and in buildings in a short space of time. From here, a lively trade is conducted with Frankfurt and Antwerp, above all is a sort of cloth that they call Saye and which is made in the many weaving workshops here. Thanks to its natural setting and its fortifications, it is an extremely secure city, surrounded on all sides by a moat and hence not easy to besiege."

The city of Mons lies on a slight hill beside the River Haine southwest of Brussels. Its surrounding moat and well-fortified ramparts are clearly recognizable. Mons dates back to Roman times, when Caesar erected a military camp on one of its hills during the Gallic Wars. The historical centre gradually spread outwards around a monastery founded in the 7th century by the city's patron saint, Waltrude of Mons. To protect Mons from attack, the Count of Hainaut had a castle erected on top of the hill. Rising from the middle of an open square left of centre is the church of Sainte-Waudru; below it, at the centre of the city, lies the main marketplace with the town hall. Emphasis fall upon the fields and meadows surrounding the city, in reference to the productive local farming and livestock industries. Another sphere of economic activity was weaving; amongst the textiles manufactured in Mons was the famous green Saye, a woolen cloth that derived its name from southern England.

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