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Description

Fine example of Johann Daniel's Herz's rare Birds Eye View of Jerusalem, published in Augsburg circa 1735.

Herz' view is one of the most spectacular views of Jerusalem, printed from quite possibly the largest 18th single copper plate on the largest single sheet of handmade paper up to that date.

This rare pictorial view includes a meticulous reconstruction of biblical Jerusalem, showing one hundred and fifty nine buildings, gates, places of historical interest or of historic events.

Herz's panorama of Jerusalem is extremely rare and has been called "a technical tour de force," one of the largest ever engravings made from a single copper plate. In this instance, the view is printed on what would seem to be the largest ever single sheet of hand made paper (the present sheet is 50.5 x 34.5 inches). The present sheet was created some 40 years prior toJames Whatman's "Antiquarian," which was believed to be the largest single sheet of hand made paper. Named for the Society of Antiquaries that commissioned Whatman, Antiquarian measured 53 x 31 inches and required nine men to make it using a lever system. Previously, the size of a piece of paper was limited to the span of a vatman's arms.

Herz had evidently specialized in the production of large-format prints, as this and a number of comparable engravings show of his work show a his remarkable craftsmanship.

The view shows Jerusalem surrounded by a high wall with classical battle fortifications and towers. Inside the walls can be found an array of temples, palaces, amphitheaters and public places, with hundreds of people filing the public places and streets.

As noted by Laor:

In the center of the Temple of Solomon is shown as an immense building complex. At the bottom (no. 110) is the Amphitheater built by Herodes. The gates are shown surmounted by big towers. Hundreds of people are filling the streets inside and outside the walls. Left lower corner, Golgotha; right lower corner, Judsa haning on the tree, At the top, the Mount of Olives and the Ascension of Jesus Christ is shown.

While we have handled the map once before and have seen several other examples in institutional collections, etc., this is the only example we have seen with the full plate mark, as all others have been trimmed. Moreover, the present example lacks the engraving credit in the lower left corner (Societas excudit Viennae et Augustae Vindelicor) and the privilege at the bottom right (Cum Gratia et Pivileg: Sac. Caes: Majest.)

We have located records suggesting the title of the 16 page pamphlet is in German and Latin as follows:

Diatyposis scenographica metropolis Palestinae sedisque regiae & aulae regum Iudaeorum Hierosolymarum : ex veterum scriptorum narrationibus, maxime Josephi, & observationibus recentiorum /diligentia & accuratione novo specimine concinnata, descripta, aeri incisa à Jo. Daniele Herzio

And in German:

Aufriss und Entwurf der Hauptstadt in Palästina, und Residenz der jüdischen Könige Jerusalem : aus den Nachrichten der alten, sonderlich Josephi und den Anmerkungen der neuern Schriftsteller

Both titles reference the view as A view of Jerusalem, the Metropolis of Palestine, Residence of the Jewish Kings, based upon the writings of Joseph and observations of modern writers.

Rarity

The Herz view is very rare on the market.

Reference
Rohricht Bibliotheca geographica Palaestinae: chronologisches Verzeichniss #256 (title given in Latin and German); Laor 66