Le plan de la ville, cité, université, fauxbourgs de Paris

Description

This plan of Paris by Melchoir Tavernier is a modified and updated version of one produced by Matthias Merian (1593–1650) in 1615.

Like Merian, Tavernier decorated his plan with a scheme of vignettes depicting the notion of social hierarchy. Above the title is a gallery of individual scenes framed by arcades. The king, Louis XIII (1601–43), is depicted at the far left of the gallery, with his queen, Anne of Austria (1601–66), at far right. Between them are men and women of Paris, differentiated by their social status. The king and queen are flanked by noble men and women respectively. After nobles come merchantmen and bourgeois ladies, concluding with male and female peasants in the two central vignettes. Verses above and below each scene describe the appearance and characteristics of the people depicted. The king, for example, is described as ‘adorned in glory’ and is a ‘radiant Sun’, while the peasantry ‘have no choice in what they wear’ but ‘cherish their condition’.

Merian’s 1615 plan also featured Louis XIII, then a 14-year-old boy ruling France with his mother, the regent, Marie de Medicis (1575–1642). Merian’s map was published to garner support for the young monarch at a time of great civil discontent and Protestant revolts. Tavernier’s map meanwhile, was published for similar reasons: first in 1625, after Louis XIII had quashed a major Huguenot rebellion, and again in 1628 and 1630.

Full title:
Le plan de la ville, cité, université, fauxbourgs de Paris avec la description de son antiquité
Published:
1630, Paris
Publisher:  
Melchoir Tavernier
Format:
Map / Engraving
Creator:
Melchoir Tavernier
Usage terms
Public Domain
Held by
British Library
Shelfmark:
Maps * 14295.(229.)

Full catalogue details

Related articles

Braun & Hogenberg and after: the town plans of the 17th century

Article by:
James Elliot
Theme:
Town and city

James Elliot explores the influence of Georg Braun and Frans Hogenberg's seminal atlas, the Civitates Orbis Terrarum, on 17th-century map-making.

The printed map as a tool of political struggle: Paris is well worth a… map

Article by:
Małgorzata Biłozór-Salwa
Theme:
Town and city

Małgorzata Biłozór-Salwa explores how maps were used as political tools by successive French rulers: re-issued and re-worked to include royal portraits emphasising their symbolic control over the capital city.

Related collection items