Surprisingly few biographical details are known about J. Cook, given his undisputed abilities. A follower of the Van de Veldes, his work is mainly concentrated in the Mediterranean and he is mainly known for his topographical views of Alexandria.
The detail on the previous page shows a view across the Golden Horn with the Galata Tower in the foreground (MM). The tower was built in 1348 during an expansion of the Genoese colony in Constantinople.
The magnificent Hagia Sofia (C) is surrounded by cypress trees and edged too by the 5th Century city walls which were commissioned by Emperor Theodosius II. Cook allows a degree of artistic license in his placement of the wall, despite the careful positioning of the Topkapi Palace and its seraglio just below it. The domed building in the palace grounds closest to the coast is the Sepetçiler Kasri or Hall of the Basket Weavers, built in the 16th Century as a pavilion and boat house by Sultan Murat III.
To the right on the water are the docks of Eminönü (D), meaning 'in front of justice', the name most probably came from the Ottoman courts and custom houses that were found in this area.