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Marseille, by Georg Braun and Frans Hogenberg. 1575

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Marseille.

€480  ($561.6 / £408)
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Item Number:  6936
Category:  Antique maps > Europe > France

Antique map - Bird's-eye view plan of Marseille by Braun and Hogenberg, with key to locations.

COMMENTARY BY BRAUN (on verso): "Marseilles, called Massalia in Greek, Massilia in Latin, is a rich city in Provence in France. It was built by the Greeks, which is why the inhabitants are endowed with good manners and admire and practise the liberal arts. The city allied itself with the Romans, who, however, corrupted and plundered it as a result of their pride and insatiable greed. [...] Although Marseilles can be highly praised for a variety of reasons, [...] Marseilles deserves eternal praise because it was one of the first cities to accept the redeeming faith directly after the birth of Christ."

The engraving shows Marseilles from the southeast, with a part of the Frioul Archipelago on the far left, the two main islands of Pomègues and Ratonneau, and the small island of If. The fortress on If owes its fame mainly to the novel The Count of Monte Cristo by Alexandre Dumas. The fortress of Notre-Dame de la Garde, built in 1525, is perched on a high limestone bluff in the foreground. This was replaced 300 years later by a neo-Byzantine church of the same name, which is the landmark of present-day Marseilles. To the left of it are the facing fortresses of Saint-Nicolas and Saint-Jean. After its founding by the Greeks around 600 BC. Marseilles became one of the most important Greek colonies due to its favourable location. In 125 BC the city asked the Roman Empire for help in defending itself against Gallic tribes, which led to its annexation by the Romans. Catacombs and writings by martryrs document the importance of Christianity in Marseilles as early as the 1st century AD; the Diocese of Marseilles also goes back to this time. (Taschen)

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

Copper engraving
Size: 32 x 36cm (12.5 x 14 inches)
Verso text: Latin
Condition: Uncoloured, excellent.
Condition Rating: A
References: Van der Krogt 4, 2634; Taschen, Braun and Hogenberg, p.145.

From: Civitates Orbis Terrarum, ... Part 2: De Praecipuis, Totius Universi Urbibus, Liber Secundus. Köln, Gottfried von Kempen, 1575. (Van der Krogt 4, 41:1.2)