Gent – Gandavum, Amplissima Flandriae urbs (..).; G. Braun & F. Hogenberg – 1572-1617

Frans Hogenberg (1535 – 1590) / Georg Braun (1541 – 1622).

Vroege kopergravure van Gent. Iconische plattegrond in perspectief met opstanden van huizen en gebouwen van de stad. Uit het eerste deel van het beroemde stedenboek Civitates Orbis Terrarum van Braun en Hogenberg.

Early copper engraving of Gent. Iconic view of the town’s houses and buildings. From the first part of the famous city book Civitates Orbis Terrarum by Braun and Hogenberg.


1 in stock



  • Type: carthografische prent
  • Title: Gandavum, Amplissima Flandriae urbs, a Julo Caesare condita (..).
  • Publication: 1572-1617
  • Technique: kopergravure
  • Carthographer: Jacob van Deventer (1545)
  • Publicer: Gottfried von Kempen e.a.
  • Engraver: Frans Hogenberg
  • Publiced in: Civitates Orbis Terrarum door Frans Hogenberg en George Braun in Köln
  •   34.0 x 48.5 cm. (13.4 x 19.1 inches)
  • 40.5 x 50.3 cm (15.9 x 19.8 inches)
  • Verso: Latijnse tekst
  • M180_2 BO
  • Source: Koeman II B&H 1 [15] / Taschen p. 72 / Fauser #4545


Condition: C

Redelijk, gegeven de leeftijd. Middenvouw als uitgegeven met voldoende marges. Papier met wat vlekjes. Twee scheuren en een split in de onderzijde tot in het beeld, verstevigd aan het verso zonder beeldverlies.

Reasonable, given age. Center fold as issued with sufficient margins. Paper with some spots. Some tears and a split at the lower part up to the image, reinforced on the verso without image loss.


Translation of the title: ‘Ghent, the most splendid city in Flanders, was founded by Julius Caesar and called Gaius after his forename, as the Brabant chroniclers relate. The city is distinguished by its rivers, altogether delightful, magnificent, spacious, never confined, nowhere stifling. The houses are innumerable and well-kept, the men richly talented, the customs venerable. A double wall amplifies the beautiful appearance of the place, which – like Louvain – also has quiet corners for reflection and study. Ghent also possesses famous schools and magnificent churches; the climate is excellent. The people, it can be said, are more frugal than parsimonious. Ghent is embellished by the relics of several saints and two famous monasteries dedicated to St Peter, Prince of the Apostles, and St Bavo; each has an abbot and a sizeable annual rental income.’

The view of Ghent shows the city from the northwest in plan view from a great height. The historical core of the city occupies the peninsula between the two Rivers Schelde and Leie. The cathedral of Sint-Baafs (51) is almost at the very centre of the map: it houses the famous Ghent Altarpiece painted by Hubert and Jan van Eyck. Together with the Gothic church of Sint-Niklaas (57) lower down and the nearby Sint-Jacobskerk (43), Sint-Baafs serves as one of the three main orientation points inside the city centre. Within this triangle stands the 14th-century belfry (55), 118 m high, which forms part of the cloth hall. The former Sint-Baafs monastery lies somewhat outside the city centre and is surrounded by fortifications and moats (103). Ghent, which is situated to the northwest of Brussels, derives its name from the Celtic ganda , meaning “confluence”. As a leading centre of cloth production, in the High Middle Ages, Ghent rose to become a major power with a flourishing economy and together with Bruges was the most important centre of commerce in Flanders. From the 13th to the middle of the 14th century Ghent was the second-largest city in northern Europe after Paris, with some 60,000 inhabitants, but in the second half of the 14th century these numbers began to decline.

Commentary by George Braun: ‘Ghent has a circumference of three German miles, possesses 20 islands, which lie in the surrounding lakes and rivers and are also inhabited, 98 bridges, including three that have more than two spans and beneath which even the biggest ships can pass. There are 100 windmills that can grind even the largest produce. In this city alone there are seven parish churches, five abbeys, two collegiate churches, 25 monasteries and seven general hospices. On the site where the new castle now stands, lay in olden times the village of Ganden, from which the city also took its name, and a magnificent Benedictine monastery of St Bavo, which was constructed from an old fortress and which in 1540 was enlarged by Emperor Charles V into an even bigger palace.’

Frans Hogenberg & George Braun

Frans Hogenberg (1535-1590) was een belangrijke Vlaamse etser, carthograaf en uitgever. Hij sympathiseerde met de hervorming en vluchtte van Antwerpen naar Duitsland. In Keulen richtte hij samen met Georg Braun een cartografische drukkerij-uitgeverij op. Georg Braun (1541 – 1622) was redacteur en kanunnik van de Dom van Keulen.

Frans Hogenberg (1535 – 1590) 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 1560’s Frans Hogenberg was employed upon Abraham Ortelius’s Theatrum Orbis Terrarum, published in 1570; he is named as engraver of numerous maps. In 1568 he was bannend 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.

Georg Braun (1541 – 1622) 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.

Civitates Orbis Terrarum

Braun en Hogenberg stelden in 1572 het stadsgezichtenboek Civitates Orbis Terrarum samen. Dit boek sloeg aan in Duitsland en raakte later overal bekend. Het zesde en laatste deel verscheen in 1617.  Het is de grootste verzameling plattegronden en illustraties die ooit is verschenen. Het boek is ontstaan tussen 1572 en 1617 en bevat 363 kaarten en stadsgezichten van alle belangrijke steden in Europa en steden in Azië, Afrika en Latijns-Amerika. Ruim honderd kunstenaars en cartografen hebben meegewerkt aan deze atlas, die niet alleen plattegronden van steden laat zien maar ook afbeeldingen van mensen in hun landelijke kleding, schepen en topografische afbeeldingen van stad en land. De atlas was bedoeld als gids voor de in 1570 verschenen wereldatlas Theatrum Orbis Terrarum van Abraham Ortelius die inderdaad een aantal bladen voor zijn wereldatlas gebruikt heeft.

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, Cornelis Antonisz., 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, the next volumes appeared in 1575, 1581, 1588, 1596 and 1617. 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.

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