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from the 16th to the 19th centuries
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16th century prospects of Helsingør & Ribe
16th century prospects of Helsingør & RibeBraun & Hogenberg.
Elsenor. Ripen.
Cologne, 1598. 335 x 475mm. Coloured. Two early prospects on one sheet, published in the 'Civitates Orbis Terrarum': Helsingør in Sjaelland & Ribe in Jutland.
Helsingør is famed as Elsinore, the setting for Shakespeare's 'Hamlet'. Situated on the narrow Øresund the castle Kronborg it became the base for the collection of 'Sound Dues', customs and tolls on shipping. Braun wrote: 'In the direction of the sea stands a well-fortified, impregnable castle called the Kronborg, where all the goods that are exported from the country are checked. Anyone who infringes this immediately forfeits his life, and all goods, however worthless they may be, pass into the royal state treasury. All the ships that pass through this strait, whatever their course, must lower their sails and pay the royal customs officials the stipulated toll.'
Ribe, the oldest extant Danish town (founded c.700AD), is shown dominated by the Cathedral.
The 'Civitatis Orbis Terrarum' was the first methodical series of town plans, issued in six volumes between 1572 & 1617. The plans were collected from different sources, resulting in a wide range of artistic styles, and were engraved by Franz Hogenberg, with a text edited by Georg Braun. Designed as a sister publication to the Ortelius atlas, the 'Theatrum Orbis Terrarum', it included many of the earliest extant plans of many places, including London.

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