Joan Baptist Vrients (1552-1612) and Claes Janszoon Visscher (1586/7-1652)
Anterpia Totius Inferiorisae Primaria Urbs. Amsterdam: Claes J. Visscher de Jonge, 1652. 610 x 2240mm. Hand-coloured engraved panorama of Antwerp on 4 sheets joined, with woodcut inscription above on 6 strips joined, and letterpress text below with a history of Antwerp in Dutch, French and Latin, in 18 columns on 6 sheets, each bearing the imprint of Nicholas Visscher, with allegorical scenes in upper register, surrounding central title 'Antverpia', with the arms of Brabant and Antwerp, a cartouche upper left containing Latin verse, De Magnificentia urbis Antverpiae, a cartouch upper right bearing the privilege granted by Albert and Isabella, with Visscher's imprint. (Careful restoration, affecting margins and small areas of the townscape.)
A MAGNIFICENT RARE PANORAMA OF ANTWERP, one of only three known copies by Visscher. Joan Baptist Vrients first published this image of the town in 1610, having been granted a privilege to do so by Albert and Isabella, Archduke and Archduchess of Austria. Johannes Jansson published a new version in 1617, which was in turn republished by Johannes Loots, and later in the rare reissue by Visscher.
This view of Antwerp in the early 17th century shows the city at a time when it had regained some of the prosperity lost with the exodus of many citizens after 1585. Home to Rubens, Antwerp remained one of the art capitals of Europe during the 17th century. Its earlier Gothic buildings are seen in the townscape, including its cathedral Onze Lieve Vrouw, St Jacobskerk, St Andrieskerk and the Vleeshuis with is prominent stepped gable.
Cf. Holstein XLIX, 61 (II).