1575 Braun & Hogenberg Antique Map City Plan of Tournai or Doornik, Belgium

Cartographer : Braun & Hogenberg

This fine beautifully hand coloured original antique map a birds-eye view of the town ofTournai or Doornik, a Walloon city located 85 kilometres west-southwest of Brussels, on the river Scheldt, in the province of Hainaut in Belgium was published by Georg Braun & Frans Hogenberg for the 1575 atlas of town plans Civiates Orbis Terrarum Vol II (1572-1612) intended as a companion to Abraham Ortelius's master Atlas Theatrum Orbis Terrarum published in 1570.

Bird's-eye view of the city from the south seen fortified with a Renaissance-style moat and wall with projecting bastions. The Old Town wall, dating from 1290, can be seen inside the city. The 12th-century Gothic cathedral of Notre-Dame (5) stands out in the centre , the most important and influential church building in Belgium. 
Tournai is one of Belgium's oldest cities. A formidable stronghold as early as the 4th century AD, it was the main centre of the Salian Franks until the mid-5th century. Tournai became an Episcopal See at the beginning of the 6th century and belonged then to the Count of Flanders from 1188 to France. 
In the 15th century the city flourished economically and culturally as a result of its tapestry industry (Rogier van der Weyden, among others). In the Treaties of Madrid and Cambrai (1526/29), France had to cede Tournai to Charles V and it thus became part of the Spanish Netherlands.  

Verso Text: "Tornacum or Turnacum is a city in Gallia Belgica, situated on the Schelde in the territory of the Nervii, called Tournai by its French inhabitants, but Dorneck by the Germans. Tournai has always been a large and powerful city, with an abundance of goods and commercial activities and wonderfully resourceful craftsmen, who invent new articles every day, and although some of these go out of use they constantly conceive of other new things, both useful and delightful, so that they have at all times something that provides work and a means of livelihood for the poor." 

Civitates Orbis Terrarum

The first volume of the Civitates Orbis Terrarum was published in Cologne in 1572. The sixth and the final volume appeared in 1617. 
This great city atlas, edited by Georg Braun and largely engraved by Franz Hogenberg, eventually contained 546 prospects, bird-eye views and map views of cities from all over the world. Braun (1541-1622), a cleric of Cologne, was the principal editor of the work, and was greatly assisted in his project by the close, and continued interest of Abraham Ortelius, whose Theatrum Orbis Terrarum of 1570 was, as a systematic and comprehensive collection of maps of uniform style, the first true atlas.

For a variety of reasons town plans were comparatively latecomers in the long history of cartography. Few cities in Europe in the middle ages had more than 20,00 inhabitants and even London in the late Elizabethan period had only 100-150,000 people which in itself was probably 10 times that of any other English city. The Nuremberg Chronicle in 1493 included one of the first town views of Jerusalem, thereafter, for most of the sixteenth century, German cartographers led the way in producing town plans in a modern sense. In 1544 Sebastian Munster issued in Basle his Cosmographia containing roughly sixty-six plans and views, some in the plan form, but many in the old panorama or birds eye view. (Ref: Tooley; M&B)

Condition Report:
Paper thickness and quality: - Heavy and stable
Paper color: - off white
Age of map color: - Early
Colors used: - Green, blue, red, yellow
General color appearance: - Authentic
Paper size: - 21 1/2in x 16in (550mm x 400mm)
Plate size: - 16 3/4in x 14 1/4in (440mm x 365mm)
Margins: - Min 1in (25mm)

Margins: - Light chipping to margin edges
Plate area: - None
Verso: - None