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Description:This fine original hand coloured copper-plate engraved antique map of Germania & central Europe stretching from Poland to Italy to Denmark, by Nicolas Sanson, was engraved in 1689 - dated in the cartouche - and was published by Pierre Mariette in Cartes Generales de Toutes les Parties du Monde
General Definitions:Paper thickness and quality: - Heavy and stablePaper color : - off whiteAge of map color: - Original & laterColors used: - Yellow, green, blue, pinkGeneral color appearance: - AuthenticPaper size: - 24in x 18 1/2in (610mm x 470mm)Plate size: - 21 1/2in x 16in (545mm x 405mm)Margins: - Min 1in (25mm)
Imperfections:Margins: - NonePlate area: - NoneVerso: - None
Background: Germania was the Roman term for the geographical region in north-central Europe inhabited mainly by Germanic peoples.It extended from the Danube in the south to the Baltic Sea, and from the Rhine in the west to the Vistula. The Roman portions formed two provinces of the Empire, Germania Inferior to the north (present-day southern Netherlands, Belgium, and western Germany), and Germania Superior to the south (Switzerland, southwestern Germany, and eastern France).Germania was inhabited mostly by Germanic tribes, but also Celts, Balts, Scythians and later on Early Slavs. The population mix changed over time by assimilation, and especially by migration. The ancient Greeks were the first to mention the tribes in the area. Later, Julius Caesar wrote about warlike Germanic tribesmen and their threat to Roman Gaul, and there were military clashes between the Romans and the indigenous tribes. Tacitus wrote the most complete account of Germania that still survives.The origin of the term Germania is uncertain, but was known by Caesars time, and may be Gaulish in origin.Germania was inhabited by different tribes, most of them Germanic but also some Celtic, proto-Slavic, Baltic and Scythian peoples. The tribal and ethnic makeup changed over the centuries as a result of assimilation and, most importantly, migrations. The Germanic people spoke several different dialects.Classical records show little about the people who inhabited the north of Europe before the 2nd century BC. In the 5th century BC, the Greeks were aware of a group they called Celts (Keltoi). Herodotus also mentioned the Scythians but no other tribes. At around 320 BC, Pytheas of Massalia sailed around Britain and along the northern coast of Europe, and what he found on his journeys was so strange that later writers refused to believe him. He may have been the first Mediterranean to distinguish the Germanic people from the Celts. Contact between German tribes and the Roman Empire did take place and was not always hostile. Recent excavations of the Waldgirmes Forum show signs that a civilian Roman town was established there, which has been interpreted to mean that Romans and Germanic tribesmen were living in peace, at least for a while.Caesar described the cultural differences between the Germanic tribesmen, the Romans, and the Gauls in his book Commentarii de Bello Gallico, where he recalls his defeat of the Suebi tribes at the Battle of Vosges. He describes them at length at the beginning of Book IV and the middle of Book VI. He states that the Gauls, although warlike, had a functional society and could be civilized, but that the Germanic tribesmen were far more savage and were a threat to Roman Gaul and Rome itself. Caesar said the Germanic tribes were nomadic, with no notable settlements and a primitive culture. He used this as one of his justifications for why they had to be conquered. His accounts of barbaric northern tribes could be described as an expression of the superiority of Rome, including Roman Gaul.Caesars accounts portray the Roman fear of the Germanic tribes and the threat they posed. The perceived menace of the Germanic tribesmen proved accurate. The most complete account of Germania that has been preserved from Roman times is Tacitus Germania.