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Rouen - Nîmes - Bordeaux by Braun Georg & Hogenberg Franz 1582

Braun G. & Hogenberg F. and the Civitates Orbis Terrarum.

The Civitates Orbis Terrarum, or the "Braun & Hogenberg", is a six-volume town atlas and the greatest book of town views and plans ever published: 363 engravings, sometimes beautifully coloured. It was one of the best-selling works in the last quarter of the 16th century. Georg Braun wrote the text accompanying the plans and views on the verso. A large number of the plates were engraved after the original drawings of Joris Hoefnagel (1542-1600), who was a professional artist. The first volume was published in Latin in 1572, the sixth volume in 1617. Frans Hogenberg created the tables for volumes I through IV, and Simon van den Neuwel created those for volumes V and VI. Other contributors were cartographer Daniel Freese, and Heinrich Rantzau. Works by Jacob van Deventer, Sebastian Münster, and Johannes Stumpf were also used. Translations appeared in German and French.

Following the original publication of Volume 1 of the Civitates in 1572, seven further editions of 1575, 1577, 1582, 1588, 1593, 1599 and 1612 can be identified. Vol.2, first issued in 1575, was followed by further editions in 1597 and in 1612. The next volumes appeared in 1581, 1588, 1593, 1599 and 1606. The German translation of the first volume appeared from 1574 on and the French edition from 1575 on.

Several printers were involved: Theodor Graminaeus, Heinrich von Aich, Gottfried von Kempen, Johannis Sinniger, Bertram Buchholtz and Peter von Brachel, who all worked in Cologne.

Georg Braun (1541-1622)

Georg Braun was born in Cologne in 1541. After his studies in Cologne, he entered the Jesuit Order as a novice. In 1561 he obtained his bachelor's degree and in 1562 his Magister Artium. Although he left the Jesuit Order, he studied theology, gaining a licentiate in theology.

Frans Hogenberg (1535-1590)

Frans Hogenberg was a Flemish and German painter, engraver, and mapmaker. He was born in Mechelen as the son of Nicolaas Hogenberg.

By the end of the 1560s Frans Hogenberg was employed upon Abraham Ortelius's Theatrum Orbis Terrarum, published in 1570; he is named as an engraver of numerous maps. In 1568 he was banned from Antwerp by the Duke of Alva and travelled to London, where he stayed a few years before emigrating to Cologne. There he immediately embarked on his two most important works, the Civitates published from 1572 and the Geschichtsblätter, which appeared in several series from 1569 until about 1587.

Thanks to such large scale projects as the Geschichtsblätter and the Civitates, Hogenberg's social circumstances improved with each passing year. He died as a wealthy man in Cologne in 1590.

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Rotomagus, vulgo Roan, Normandiae Metropolis [on sheet with] Nemavsus, Nismes, Civitas Narbonensie Galliae Vetustissima [and] Civitas Burdegalensis in Aquitanea, Genuina Descrip.

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Item Number:  26680
Category:  Antique maps > Europe > France
References: Van der Krogt 4 - 3792; Fauser - State 2; Taschen, Br. Hog. - #12122

Old, antique map with three bird's-eye views by Georg Braun and Frans Hogenberg: Rouen, Nîmes and Bordeaux, after Georg Hoefnagel.

Carte ancienne avec trois vues à vol d'oiseau par Georg Braun et Frans Hogenberg: Rouen, Nîmes et Bordeaux, d'après Georg Hoefnagel.

Date of the first edition: 1572
Date of this map: 1582

Copper engraving, printed on paper.
Size (not including margins): 33 x 48.5cm (12.9 x 18.9 inches)
Verso text: Latin
Condition: Original coloured, excellent.
Condition Rating: A
References: Van der Krogt 4, 3792, State 2; Fauser, #12122, #9928, #1653; Taschen, Braun and Hogenberg, p.64.

From: Civitates Orbis Terrarum, Liber Primus. Köln, Gottfried von Kempen, 1582. (Van der Krogt 4, 41:1.1(1582))

ROUEN

CARTOUCHE: Rotomagus or Rouen, the capital of Normandy.

COMMENTARY BY BRAUN (on verso): "Rouen is the capital of Normandy, to the south it lies beside the Seine with its plentiful river traffic, to the north beside high hills displaying volcanic activity. Since the city is surrounded by fertile farmland, Emperor Julius Cesar surrounded it early on with massive strong walls, and Roman soldiers were stationed here to protect the whole province. This city is particularly distinguished by its magnificent archbishop's house, its splendid monasteries, its palace and its town hall, its bridge with squared stones, its main church and the three towers etc."

The city's favourable position between the Seine to the south and the hills in the north is clearly illustrated in this view; which is seen from the east from an ideal hill and which also shows the intact city walls from the Roman era. The staffage emphasizes the course taken by the road from Paris leading into the city.

NÎMES

CARTOUCHE: Nîmes, the ancient city in the Roman province of Gallia Narbonensis.

COMMENTARY BY BRAUN (on verso): "Nemausus, called Nismes in the vernacular, possesses a games arena that is called the Amphitheatrum, old tumbledown houses and ruins and also the Temple of Hadrian. There is also a main church dedicated to Our Lady that was built with huge squared stones and is extremely imposing. Three short miles from Nîmes, a wondrous bridge crosses the River Gardon, built with arches on three levels, of which one allows beasts and people to cross, the second carries the water conduit."

Nîmes was a flourishing settlement even in Celtic times and due to its favourable location on the Via Domitia, a major transportation route linking Italy and Spain, was developed into the capital of Narbonensis province. Amongst other things, it was given a 7-km-long city wall and the dominant Tour Magne watchtower (top centre). Also stemming from Roman times is the imposing amphitheatre (left), which could seat some 23,000 spectators and is used for performances even today. Its façade, comprising two storeys, each with 60 arches, is clearly recognizable, even in foreshortening. Above the cathedral and clock tower lies the Maison Carrée, a Roman temple built by Marcus Vipsanius Agrippa around 19 B.C. The 49-m-high Pont du Gard aqueduct, mentioned by Braun and visible top right, is an important work of Roman civil engineering.

BORDEAUX

CARTOUCHE: Faithful illustration of the city of Bordeaux in Aquitaine.

COMMENTARY BY BRAUN (on verso): "Burdegal is rightly called the capital of Aquitaine. Firstly due to its great age, secondly due to its magnificent houses, thirdly because it is considered a bulwark of France on account of its well-fortified castle and its sustained resistance. This will also be ackowledged by the English, who long besieged Bordeaux in order to conquer its fortress, as they have done in other cities with less difficulty."

The fortifications were built by Charles VII of France only following the reconquest of Bordeaux in 1452. Shown on a smaller scale to the right of the château du Hâ is the Gothic cathedral of Saint-André with its free-standing clock tower, the Tour Pey-Berland. Outside the city walls lie the ruins of the Roman amphitheatre.

Braun G. & Hogenberg F. and the Civitates Orbis Terrarum.

The Civitates Orbis Terrarum, or the "Braun & Hogenberg", is a six-volume town atlas and the greatest book of town views and plans ever published: 363 engravings, sometimes beautifully coloured. It was one of the best-selling works in the last quarter of the 16th century. Georg Braun wrote the text accompanying the plans and views on the verso. A large number of the plates were engraved after the original drawings of Joris Hoefnagel (1542-1600), who was a professional artist. The first volume was published in Latin in 1572, the sixth volume in 1617. Frans Hogenberg created the tables for volumes I through IV, and Simon van den Neuwel created those for volumes V and VI. Other contributors were cartographer Daniel Freese, and Heinrich Rantzau. Works by Jacob van Deventer, Sebastian Münster, and Johannes Stumpf were also used. Translations appeared in German and French.

Following the original publication of Volume 1 of the Civitates in 1572, seven further editions of 1575, 1577, 1582, 1588, 1593, 1599 and 1612 can be identified. Vol.2, first issued in 1575, was followed by further editions in 1597 and in 1612. The next volumes appeared in 1581, 1588, 1593, 1599 and 1606. The German translation of the first volume appeared from 1574 on and the French edition from 1575 on.

Several printers were involved: Theodor Graminaeus, Heinrich von Aich, Gottfried von Kempen, Johannis Sinniger, Bertram Buchholtz and Peter von Brachel, who all worked in Cologne.

Georg Braun (1541-1622)

Georg Braun was born in Cologne in 1541. After his studies in Cologne, he entered the Jesuit Order as a novice. In 1561 he obtained his bachelor's degree and in 1562 his Magister Artium. Although he left the Jesuit Order, he studied theology, gaining a licentiate in theology.

Frans Hogenberg (1535-1590)

Frans Hogenberg was a Flemish and German painter, engraver, and mapmaker. He was born in Mechelen as the son of Nicolaas Hogenberg.

By the end of the 1560s Frans Hogenberg was employed upon Abraham Ortelius's Theatrum Orbis Terrarum, published in 1570; he is named as an engraver of numerous maps. In 1568 he was banned from Antwerp by the Duke of Alva and travelled to London, where he stayed a few years before emigrating to Cologne. There he immediately embarked on his two most important works, the Civitates published from 1572 and the Geschichtsblätter, which appeared in several series from 1569 until about 1587.

Thanks to such large scale projects as the Geschichtsblätter and the Civitates, Hogenberg's social circumstances improved with each passing year. He died as a wealthy man in Cologne in 1590.