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Genua: Merian 1650

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  • Title: Genua
  • Author: Matthäus Merian
  • Date: 1650
  • Medium: Copperplate engraving
  • Condition: Very Good Plus - age toning, issued center fold, light foxing
  • Inches: 15 1/2 x 8 1/4 [Platemark]
  • Centimeters: 39.37 x 20.96 [Platemark]
  • Product ID: 2085

Map of Genoa on the northwest coast of Italy depicting ships sailing into the city harbor. Includes numbered legend along bottom margin indicating various buildings and structures in the city such as its lighthouse, arsenal, bridges, churches, palaces, monasteries, and fortifications. An artistic rendering of a compass rose in the lower righthand corner orients the viewer.

Matthaus Merian the Elder was born in Basel, Switzerland on the 22nd of September 1593. He began his career in the arts with the engraver Friedrich Meyer in Zurich, where he studied copper engraving as well as drawing. In 1619 he went to Frankfurt and was employed by the well-known publisher Johann Theodor de Bry. He would go on to take over and complete two works started in 1590 by de Bry, Grand Voyages and Petit Voyages respectively. Merian the Elder is perhaps most known for the work he produced in partnership with Martin Zeiller titled Topographia, one of the largest publishing works at the time, which ultimately totaled 21 volumes. The work was continued by Merian’s sons Matthaus the Younger and Caspar upon his death in June of 1650.