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Maps, prints and letterpress text covering the major battles and sieges

Claes Jansz Visscher II (c.1587-1652)

Mardyck, 1645

t’Fort Mardyck ende t’Houte Wambus curieus na t leven afgeteekent door C.V.d.I. 1645 or later

Etched and engraved view and map printed from one copperplate on one sheet of paper; separate letterpress text pasted to the bottom of the map; laid down on paper then mounted on paper (Mount Type B); gilt edges top and bottom | Scale: 1:31,300 approx. | RCIN 723059

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A high oblique view of Mardyck, besieged from 23 June to 10 July 1645 by the French commanded by Gaston, duc d'Orléans (25 April 1608-2 February 1660) and Josias Rantzau (18 October 1609-14 September 1660) resulting in the capitulation of the fort by the Spanish. Thirty Years War (1618-1648). Oriented with north-north-west to top (cardinal points).

The view at the top of the print is taken from the north-east, looking south-west along the beach in between Fort Mardyck and the wooden fortified gun emplacement 't' Houte Wambus'. The lines of contravallation in the lower view or map are designed to protect the besieging forces. The ships off the coast are the Dutch fleet of Admiral Marten Tromp who had arrived on 28 June in order to cut off any support for the Spanish which might have arrived by sea from Dunkirk The letterpress text gives the history of the building of the fort by Spinola and an account of the siege. Another example of this text (Rijksmuseum RP-P-OB-81.551B) has the Dutch text printed to the left of the French text.

The dates for the siege of 22 June – 10 July, as supplied by the George III catalogue do not correspond with the dates of 21 June – 20 July which appear on RCIN

  • Claes Jansz Visscher II (c.1587-1652) (printmaker and publisher) [left of centre of bottom view:] CJVisscher Excudebat [end of Dutch text:] t’ AMSTERDAM. / Ghedruckt by Claes Iansz Visscher.

  • Watermark: Map: none. Text: none. Backing paper: cross in a pear drop shape.

    Condition: one fold line

  • Scale: 1:31,300 approx. Scale bar: 700 Roeden de twee Duysent maken een Duytsche Mÿle [84 mm = ].

    28.5 x 43.1 cm (neatline of map)

    29.5 x 43.1 cm (image of map)

    6.9 x 43.2 cm (image of view)

    cropped (platemark)

    51.6 x 43.2 cm (sheet)

    54.1 x 43.9 cm (mount)

  • Printed title:

    t’Fort Mardyck ende t’Houte Wambus curieus na t leven afgeteekent door C.V.d.I. [top view, top centre in banderole]

    Printed title:


    Printed title:

    Bref Recit touchant / Le Fort / MARDYCK / Avec le sit, siege & prise d’iceluy, / l’An. 1645. // Kort verhael / Van het Fort / MARDYCK, / Sijn ghelegentheyt, Belegeringhe / ende Veroveren, in ‘t Jaer 1645. [Letterpress text in French and Dutch]


    George III heading: Mardick 22 June – 10 July 1645.

    Other annotations: none.

    George III catalogue entry:

    Mardick Plan et Vue du Fort de Mardyck assiegé par l’Armée du Roy commandée par le Duc d’Orleans le 22 de Juin, et rendu le 10 de Juillet 1645: par C.I. Visscher: avec une Description.

  • From the collection of Cassiano dal Pozzo (1588-22 October 1657); inherited by his brother, Carlo Antonio dal Pozzo (1606-1689); sold by Carlo Antonio’s grandson to Clement XI, 1703; acquired by Cardinal Alessandro Albani by 1714, from whom purchased by George III in 1762

  • Subject(s)

    Fort Mardyck, Nord-Pas-de-Calais, France (51°01ʹ44ʺN 02°18ʹ26ʺE)

  • Bibliographic reference(s)

    M. McDonald, The Print Collection of Cassiano dal Pozzo. Part II, Architecture, Topography and Military Maps, 3 vols, London 2019, cat. no. 3170

Page revisions

  • 12 October 2020

    Clarification on date of siege added.

  • 2 December 2019

    Initial version

  • 2 December 2019

    Initial version