Detailed birdseye view of Edinburgh.
Striking image of the city of Edinburgh, as it appeared in the middle of the seventeenth century.
The castle is seen to the left, with the city spread out below it. Ships are seen beyond the port of Leith on the Firth of Forth.
Two men on horseback gallop towards the city in the foreground, and a coat of arms is found in the top left corner.
Mathaus Merian (1593-1650) was the father of engraver Matthäus the Younger, and of the painter, engraver, and naturalist Maria Sibylla Merian. He was born in Basel, Switzerland and trained in engraving in Zurich. After a time in Nancy, Paris and Strasbourg, he settled in Frankfurt. While there, he worked for Johann Theodor de Bry, the publisher and son of the travel writer. In 1617, he married Maria Magdalena de Bry, Johann Theodor’s daughter. In 1623, Merian took over the de Bry publishing house upon the death of his father-in-law. Merian’s best known works are detailed town views which, due to their accuracy and artistry, form a valuable record of European urban life in the first half of the sixteenth century