A fine example of Nicolas Delamare's map of Medieval Paris in the 14th Century, one of his ground-breaking series of eight maps illustrating the historical development of the French capital.
This fascinating map, printed at the beginning of the 18th-century, depicts Paris as it was thought to appear during the time of Charles V and VI (1367-1383). Paris, though the capital France, was a small city, concentrated on the Ile de la Cité and what is now known as the Marais District. The construction of the great cathedral that is today known as Notre Dame de Paris was just completed in 1345. While 'suburbs' expand beyond the ancient walls which bound the Marais, sites now considered to be in the heart of Paris, such as the Château du Louvre, are shown to have then been on the outskirts of the city. A key, entitled 'Renvoys', identifies numerous important buildings and sites of Medieval Paris, while various estates and ecclesiastical institutions dot the surrounding countryside. In spite of Paris' modest size, it was nonetheless the primary cultural center of Europe, being the epicenter of design and architecture of the Gothic Era.
The present map comes from the first edition, first volume of Nicolas Delamare's La Traité de la Police (Paris, 4 vols., 1705-38), considered to be the most influential legal treatise produced in early modern France. It was the first detailed history of law enforcement ever published, and details the development of the subject throughout the history of Paris. In order to illustrate the size and nature of the city during different historical periods, Delamare painstakingly consulted a variety of published and archival sources in order to construct a series of eight maps that progressively depict the evolution of Paris from Roman times up to 1700. All considered, this map represents a fascinating glimpse into Medieval Paris, which is today long lost, save for the survival of a handful of Gothic buildings.
Maps from Delmare's Paris map series rarely appear separately on the market.