VIEW OF 17TH CENTURY AMSTERDAM
“Amsterdam“, engraving printed from two copper plates, made ca. 1650, published in Frankfurt a.M. by Caspar Merian in 1659. Coloured by a later hand. Size: 19,5 x 70,5 cm.
One distinguishes from left to right the Rijzenhoofd, the Antoniesgate, warehouse of the Dutch West-India Company, the Montelbaans tower, the tower of the Zuiderkerk, the Munt and Schreierstoren, the Walloon Church, the Sint-Olofs chapel, the Oude Kerk, the Nieuwezijds Kapel, the Stock Exchange, the Waag, the old Town Hall with the pointed tower, the Nieuwe Kerk with the completed tower, the Jan Rodenpoort tower, Haringpakkers tower and tower of the Westerkerk, the Noorderkerk, the Bickers tower and the Haarlemmer gate. The city grain warehouses appear on it; the old town hall has not yet burned down (1652).
The print was part of the Topographia Germaniae Inferioris, was part of Topographia Germaniae, the most important work of engraver and publisher Matthäus Merian the Elder (1593 – 1650). He published this work jointly with Martin Zeiler (1589-1661) from Ulm, who was responsible for the text. The work contains about 2000 images and plans of towns, monasteries and castles and is considered one of the most important works in the field of geographical images.
Merian had started in 1642 with the publication of an overview work with twon views, images of landscapes and maps for which he had collected drawings for decades.
Until 1688, the series was expanded with further descriptions of European areas, eventually reaching 30 volumes with a total of 92 maps and 2142 town views, making it one of the largest published books of its time.
Matthäus Merian engraved the first parts himself and also publishes them himself. Later, the engraving work was outsourced to a large number of famous engravers, and his sons Matthäus the Younger and Caspar took over the publishing work.