[Hogenberg Geschichtsblätter] Plate-atlas with 356 plates, Cologne. Ca. 1620
Oblong folio plate-atlas (25.5 x 35 cm.) with 356 copper engravings by Franz Hogenberg, incl. engraved title and fifteen portraits [numbered in pencil, two unnumbered]. The plates with captions in German and/or French, mostly dated in the plates. Some engravings strengthened with Japanese paper, some mounted on paper, a few with small restaurations.
Binding by Hardy, Paris (c. 1860): red moroccan over cased boards, spine with gilt title, gilt ornaments and gilt edges, leather boards with coat of arms of Marquis de Mornay-Montchevreuil (who ordered this binding), descendant of Count Pierre de Mornay-Sault (founder of this collection) with his device Arte et Marte in gilt. Marbled endpapers with ornamental borders [signed by the binder] and 3 blank endpapers in front and back. Typical French 19th. c. master-binding by Hardy.
The copper engraved plates are more or less in chronological order and were engraved between ca. 1560 and 1610 [cf. dates in the plates]. Our album starts with reports on Tunis and Galeta and continues with French religious wars and numerous reports on the 80-years war in the Netherlands and bordering regions. More than half of the plates refer to Belgian and Dutch cities and battlegrounds e.g. Brussels, Antwerp, Maastricht, Eindhoven, Amsterdam, Rotterdam, The Hague etc.
The Hogenberg plates were originally made as newspaper reports on war development, to inform the public. Some were made during the sieges and fights, others shortly afterwards. They were engraved, enriched with text in mostly poor poetry and sold in often coherent series of 6 ; 8; 12 up to 100 plates. Collections of these series like ours must have been made more often but are very rare these days. Cf. F. Muller. Ned. Historieplaten. Amsterdam. 1863-70, Vol. I. pp. 39-60.