Date: 1841 (published) London
Dimensions: 12.5 x 15.25 inches (31.8 x 38.7 cm)
This attractive map of Hamburg was published in 1841 by the Society for the Diffusion of Useful Knowledge, also referred to as SDUK.
The fortifications of this port city, which was an early member of the mercantile Hanseatic League, are fascinating in this bird’s eye view of it, using water on all sides for protection from invaders. Water from the lake known as Outer Alster, and from the River Elbe shaped the development of the city’s appearance and defenses, as moats were built to surround its perimeter, taking their water from both sources. Countless bridges are depicted in the map, along with the waterways which even dissect the city centre. The map clearly illustrates why the city is modern Germany’s largest port and commercial centre.
The SDUK was founded in 1828 by Henry Peter Brougham, an idealistic British nobleman. The aim of the society was to promote self-education and egalitarian sharing of knowledge by providing instruments of learning such as maps and various other publications. Despite being affiliated with London University and various major publishing houses, the Society ultimately failed to achieve its goal as the publications were too costly for the targeted middle to lower class echelons of British society. At the same time, its publications were not grand or fine enough to appeal to the aristocracy.
Condition: This map is in A condition with original hand coloring over bright and clean paper with a sharp print impression.
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