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    Georg Braun and Franz Hogenberg. Byzantium, nunc Constantinopolis. [Cologne: 1572]. Attractive bird's-eye view of the city of Constantinople. Hand-colored double-page engraved map of Constantinople, from Braun and Hogenberg's Civitates Orbis Terrarum ("Cities of the World"). Plate size: 13 x 19.375 inches; 329 x 500 mm. Sheet size: 15.375 x 20 inches; 393 x 508 mm. Margins expertly extended, with no surface loss; top edge slightly wavy; centerfold repaired on verso; tiny split at lower edge of centerfold; some darkening or staining, mostly visible on verso. An excellent example. Matted (matte size: 19.875 x 25.625 inches; 504 x 650 mm.).

    "Constantinople is shown in bird's-eye perspective from the east. The view looks directly down upon the new palace within its 200-acre park that was built by Sultan Mehmed II in [1453?], immediately after the conquest of the city; since the 18th century it has been called the Topkapi palace. Beside it on the left stands Hagia Sofia (6th cent.), the coronation church of the Byzantine emperors. It was turned into a mosque on the day that Constantinople fell and subsequently given four minarets, still visible on the plate. Further left again are Roman ruins including obelisks and an amphitheatre. The city was founded in 668 BC under the name of Byzantion (Byzantium) by the Greeks, for whom the Bosporus Strait was already of strategic importance. Incorporated into the Roman Empire under Vespasian, in AD 324 the city was made the capital of the Eastern Empire by Emperor Constantine and renamed Constantnople...The name Istanbul was already in colloquial use in Ottoman times, but would replace Constantinople as the city's official name only in 1930."

    This example contains twelve roundels along the lower edge containing portraits of all of the sultans, from the founder of the Ottoman Empire, Osman I, up to the current ruler of the day: "Otoman, Orcan, Amtrat, Paiazit, Mahomet, Amurate, Mahomet, Baiazeto, Selim, Solimano, Selim, Amurath." Other states have a blank roundel at the extreme right, or a round containing a portrait of Murad III.

    The present map was published in the first volume of Georg Braun (1541-1622) and Frans Hogenberg (1535-1590): Civitates Orbis Terrarum (a total of six volumes were published between 1572 and 1617).

    Georg Braun and Franz Hogenberg, Civitates Orbis Terrarum. Cities of the World: Complete Edition of the Colour Plates of 1572-1627, Edited by Stephan Füssel ([Cologne]: Taschen, [2017]), page 119.

    Auction Info

    Auction Dates
    September, 2019
    5th Thursday
    Bids + Registered Phone Bidders: 0
    Lot Tracking Activity: N/A
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