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Stock# 37871
Description

One of the earliest bird's-eye view of London, which was created by Francois De Belleforest for his La Cosmographie Universelle de Tout la Monde, published in Paris in 1575.

The map is drawn based on the view of London which appeared in Braun & Hogenberg's Civitates Orbis Terrarum, first issued in 1572. Braun & Hogenberg in turn based their view on a now-lost twenty-sheet plan of London believed to have been made between 1547 and 1559.

Tudor London with its suburbs now extends outside the city walls. At the heart of the city is St. Paul's cathedral with its tall spire, which was destroyed in 1561. The gardens of the manor houses and palaces stretch out in the direction of Charing Cross, linking the mercantile city with the royal court at Westminster. Across the Thames, spanned by the magnificent London Bridge, Southwark is depicted along with the bull/bear baiting rings, immensely popular sports during the Elizabethan era. The river is teeming with ships and a variety of boats. Bull and bear pits appear south of the River Thames, with animals grazing in the nearby fields.

The two panels of text, which flank the costumed figures in the foreground, describe the vibrant economy of London.

Reference
Howgego, Printed Maps Of London 3; Pastoureau, M. Belleforest I-1, 4.