THEODORE DE BRY, AMERICA: The Complete Plates 1590-1602M. VAN GROESEN & LARRY E. TISE Book Number: 86061 Product format: Hardback
An artistic masterpiece of travel literature, admired by bibliophiles for centuries. When Flemish engraver and publisher Theodore de Bry issued the first volume of his America series in 1590, the New World was, for most Europeans, truly novel. Gleaned from the travel accounts of adventurers like Thomas Harriot, Sir Francis Drake, and Sir Walter Raleigh, De Bry's magnificent hand-coloured and highly ornamental engravings brought the new continent and its inhabitants to an enraptured audience across the Atlantic. From "Virginia" (today's North Carolina) and Florida through Central America and down into Patagonia, the first nine volumes of America depict scenery and encounters between native Americans and Europeans, revealing the latter's perceptions of the former. Preparation of food, utensils, homewares, clothing, hair ornaments, and styles of the Indians plus exquisite cartography and marginalia of mythical beasts, mermaids, serpents and sailing ships. They were based on the explorers' reports as well as De Bry's own imagination, he himself never having travelled to the New World. Although based in Frankfurt, De Bry laid the foundations of the series while in London, collaborating with artists John White and Jacques Le Moyne, whose original watercolours he adapted for the opening two volumes. With his sons, De Bry formed a family enterprise known for exquisite copper engravings and high-quality illustrations unrivalled in their mastery. The legacy of America is profound, colouring Europe's earliest visions of the Atlantic world. Countless European illustrations would, throughout the following centuries, draw inspiration from the spectacular collection. Taschen's new revolutionary publication pays homage to De Bry's finesse, reprinting all 218 plates from the rare first nine volumes alongside their respective frontispieces and continental maps. Volumes I to VI are based on the original hand-coloured editions held at the John Hay and John Carter Brown Libraries at Brown University in Providence; volumes VII to IX are from the Staats- und Stadtbibliothek in Augsburg, Germany. Clothbound, a huge 28½ x 39½cm, 376 beautiful and historic pages. New from Tashen.
Bibliophile price: £90.00