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Joan Blaeu (1598-1673)

Joan Blaeu (1598-1673)


City map of Culemborg

Bird's-eye view of the city

Original antique hand-colored map


lb Cartouch with coat of arms of Culemborg

ro Legend


39 x 52 cm

1655-1662, The Netherlands





  • Golden Age

    The maps in Blaeus  issue 'Toonneel der staden' are the ultimate in the Dutch production of printed city maps in the 17th century. They have played an important role in the image of a viable Republic of the United Netherlands.

    In 1649 the first edition of the city atlas of the Netherlands was published in Latin. A short time later, probably in 1652, a Dutch edition appeared. The part with the cities in the Netherlands consists of two bands: one with the cities under Spanish rule and one with the cities in the hands of the States General.

  • City maps

    The part with the cities of the Republic contains about 130 sheets with maps, while the part with the cities of the Southern Netherlands has just under 100 sheets.

    Some pages contain several small maps, but the vast majority consist of beautifully engraved maps in folio format.

    Although Blaeu used some copperplates from previous publishers, the maps are mainly from his own studio. Most cities were thus depicted on new copper plates, based on examples that were often sent by the city authorities. If a current map image was not available, Blaeu asked for a revised version of an older map.

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