La Ville, Cité, Université,& Faux-bourgs de Paris

Francois de Belleforest (*1530 - 1583)
Antique woodcut city plan of Paris. Printed in Paris by Nicolas Chesneau, Michel Sonnius in 1575.

More details

Reference 11680



One of the most accurate 16th Century plans of Paris available for collectors.

A large and scarce woodcut plan of Paris. Extremely fine cut for a woodcut map. Ruled in brown ink.

The plan represents Paris of the second half of the 16th century. An extensive key describes more than hundred notable sites including buildings and places. West is located at the bottom of the map to allow the correct orientation of the churches while showing the front.

This woodcut was published in La Cosmographie Universelle de tout le monde, printed 1575 in two volumes in Paris by Nicolas Chesneau and Michel Sonnius with the French text by Francois de Belleforest. It is a French version of Sebastian Münster's Cosmographia Universalis. Most of the woodcut maps and drawings of Münster's work were discarded and new woodblocks have been made. The geographical information is mainly based on Abraham Ortelius and Braun & Hogenberg, but also comes from unknown sources. All maps and views of Paris edition by Belleforest are very rare since there was one edition in one language only. The woodcuts of the Basel edition by Seb. Münster were used in 46 different editions.


CartographerFrancois de Belleforest
TitleLa Ville, Cité, Université,& Faux-bourgs de Paris
Publisher, YearNicolas Chesneau, Michel Sonnius, Paris, 1575
Plate Size41.0 x 54.5 cm (16.1 x 21.5 inches)
Sheet Size44.0 x 59.0 cm (17.3 x 23.2 inches)


Previously folded as usual. Small tear in lower margin backed. A very fine and dark impression. A very good and clean example with good margin on exzellent strong paper.


François de Belleforest was a French writer, translator and poet during the Renaissance. In 1568 he became historian of King Henry III, but had to give up soon because of inaccuracies. He worked as a writer and translator and transferred the Cosmography of Sebastian Munster into French. La Cosmographie universelle de tout le monde was published 1575 in Paris and was created in collaboration with the two Parisian publishers Nicolas Chesneau and Michel Sonnius. He has not used Sebastian Munster as sole source, several maps and views are based on Ortelius and Braun / Hogenberg, but also own work and unknown sources are found in the important work.

The picture shows the bust of Belleforest in Samatan (Gers, France). Source: Wikipedia, BastienM.

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Francois de Belleforest: La Ville, Cité, Université,& Faux-bourgs de Paris.
Antique woodcut city plan of Paris. Printed in Paris by Nicolas Chesneau, Michel Sonnius in 1575.

France - Belleforest, Francois de - La Ville, Cité, Université,& Faux-bourgs...

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