GEORG BRAUN & FRANS HOGENBERG, Sulsa (Sluys), 1572 or later.
GEORG BRAUN & FRANS HOGENBERG
Sulsa, Teutonicae Flandriae Opp. Admodum Elegans
Cologne: Frans Hogenberg, 1572 or later
Copperplate engraving with original hand-color
Paper size: 15 3/4" x 20 1/2"
bird's-eye plan of Sluis by Braun and Hogenberg.
Cartographer: Jacob van Deventer
TRANSLATION OF CARTOUCHE TEXT: Sluis, very fair town in German Flanders.
COMMENTARY BY BRAUN: "Sluis is a beautiful town in German-speaking Flanders and was once a wealthy town, since in former times a port brought the town the great prosperity and attracted merchants from the Hansa. In the year 1468 alone, shortly before Christmas, 150 merchant ships arrived in this harbour at the same time."
Situated on the Zwyn Estuary, which silted up around 1550, Sluis served as an important outer port for Bruges in the Middle Ages and from 1382 as a fortification on the Flemish border. On 24 June 1340, during the Hundred Years' War, the English achieved an important naval victory here over a French and Genoese fleet. In 1383 construction began on the fortress; damaged in the 18th century, however, it was ultimately razed in the 19th century. Only the town hall and its belfry - the only one in the Netherlands - can be identified in the city centre. Large stretches of the city wall and several of its gates still survive, the finest of which is "Die West port". (Taschen)