BOOKS ON ARCHITECTURE
|| Loyseleur de Villiers, Pieter
Vredeman de Vries, Jan
|| La ioyevse & magnifique entrée de Monseigneur
|| Antwerp, C. Plantin
|| Paris, Binha, 4 Res 820
book was published on the occasion of the Joyous Entry of François
duc d'Anjou, the brother of the king of France, into Antwerp on February
19, 1582. During the years 1557 until 1585, the city of Antwerp was
dominated by Calvinist power and it was the temporary capital of the
reunited Netherlands. The Estates General of the Netherlands intended
to recognize the duc d'Anjou as the new Duke of Brabant, in opposition
to the Spanish King Philip II.
17, 1582, Christophe Plantin's printing house received the privilege
to publish the book which contained a description of the duke's trip
through Zeeland, to Antwerp, as well as the triumphal entry itself.
The texts were written by Pieter Loyseleur de Villiers, William of Orange's
pastor. Twenty-one engravings representing the triumphal arches and
the theatres set up along the duke's route through Antwerp illustrate
the book. That same year, Plantin also published an edition in Dutch.
The copy that the duc d'Anjou had in his library is presently in the
Kunstbibliothek of the Staatlichen Museen in Berlin.
Again in 1582 copies entirely made up of the description of the Joyous
Entry and without illustrations were published by Plantin and Henricius in Antwerp, and by Claude Garnier in Paris. In his Leone
Belgico of 1588 Michael Eyzinger included three scenes of the duc
d'Anjou's entry into Antwerp.
borrowed the title page from the second edition of Lodovico Guicciardini's
Description de touts les Pais-Bas which came out in 1581. After
two pages of introduction, pages 1 to 10 relate the duc d'Anjou's trip
from Dover to Flushing and Middleburg, then on the Scheldt up to Antwerp.
Pages 11 to 36 recount in great detail the events of the triumphal entry;
then comes the description of the festivities given during the oath
made by the new Duke of Brabant to the members of the council of the
city of Antwerp and of the reciprocal oath of recognition made by these
members to the duke. The privilege granted to publish the book by the
publisher Plantin is on page 47.
magistrature entrusted Hans Vredeman de Vries and the painter Pieter
Leys to carry out the program of the Joyous Entry. According to the
archives preserved by the city of Antwerp, it seems that Vredeman de
Vries was instead the author of the project and that Leys took charge
of producing the different triumphal arches and theatres. It is possible
that the engraver Abraham de Bruyne created the book's illustrations.
number of triumphal doors and theatres were represented on a series
of paintings decorating the interior of the town hall. All of these
paintings were removed by the Spaniards, when they recaptured Antwerp
in 1585. Nonetheless two of them were preserved, the first representing
the arrival of the duc d'Anjou at the arch of triumph erected at the
old Saint Jean gate, the second showing the duke arriving at the entrance
of the Saint Michel abbey. But the scenes represented are not copies
of the book's engravings.
de Vries drew the architectural compositions for figures II, VI, VII,
X, XII, XIIII, XVI and XVIII. P. Fuhring and J. Luijten added figures
IX and XVII. The scenes are all heavy with political meaning, for they
were meant both to convey the importance of the triumphant entry of
the duc d'Anjou and to manifest the prosperity of the city and its port
during the war.
To a certain
extent, one can compare the different scenes and their decorations with
the woodcuts Pieter Coecke made for the book De Triomphe
van Antwerpen (Le triomphe d’Anvers...) published in Antwerp
on the occasion of the triumphal entry of the emperor Charles V and
crown prince and future king Philip II into Antwerp in 1549. Nevertheless
it is necessary to note that in the 1582 book various paintings are
much simpler in their composition and less ornate. It is true that the
time allowed to make the triumphal arches and the theatres on the occasion
of the duc d'Anjou's entry was very brief and that the municipal administration
only had at its disposal a reduced budget owing to the fortifications
then under way to fend off the imminent attack of Alexander Farnese
against the city.
engraving represents a view in perspective of the arrival of the duc
d'Anjou by boat south of the citadel, partly dismantled. The different
city officials, the municipality, the colonels, captains and deans,
the troops of the States of Brabant, the baron de Mérode etc.
are in ranks on the banks of the Scheldt close to the citadel and form
an honor guard up to the Emperor Gate. After this general view of the
entry, the twenty engravings of the book show us the different theatres
and triumphal arches, as well as a few triumphal floats constructed
for this Joyful Entry. The first theatre was erected outside of the
city walls, at the level of the citadel bastion oriented towards the
interior of the country (plate II). The prince of Orange and the City
Council are waiting for the duke at this place. The representation that
Jan Vredeman de Vries made of this event can be compared to a tableau,
in which real characters and their décor form a living ensemble.
On the corner of Gasthuisstraat, close to the Saint George
church, the theatre of the literary brotherhood "Le Soussi"
was built. This theatre was embellished with banderoles, plaques, obelisks,
interlaces and stucco decorations, statues of busts etc (plate
VI). Level with the street called Huidevettersstraat, the theatre
of the literary brotherhood "Les Peintres ou Violiers", is
also embellished with interlaces, cartouches and architectural statues
of busts (plate VII). The literary brotherhood called "Branche
d'Olivier" had put up its theatre very close to the street called
Klarestraat. The "pucelle d'Anvers" was represented
in the middle of the scene (plate IX). The theatre where the oaths were
taken was situated just in front of the town hall, on the Grand Place
(plate XII). The ensemble was decorated with nymphs and angels placed
around a throne. The Doric order chosen for all the architectural decorations
symbolized moral strength, represented by an eagle, a cock, a bear and
a lion. The Ionic order was chosen to decorate the theatre situated
next to the door giving access to the Saint Michel abbey (the location
of the duke's residence, in the text called "Palais") (plate
projects that Jan Vredeman de Vries developed are triumphal arches
(plates X, XIII, XVI and XVII). The entrance at the end of the street
leading to the Saint Michel abbey was preceded by a row of 70 Ionic
columns on both sides of the street, connected by a very long architrave
(plate XVII). One finds exactly the same construction in the book on
the triumphal entry published by Pieter Coecke in 1550.
Jan Vredeman de Vries' work, it is important to find a global vision
in this book, the way the author links his ornaments and decorations
with compositions of theatres and triumphal entrances, and with the
whole creation following a very rigid preestablished program. In addition,
the central prespective method, that Vredeman de Vries applies in his
theatre representations, allowed him to introduce real personages in
a few scenes, giving the effect of tableaux. Thus the artist obtains
a mixture of the imaginary and the real.
Piet Lombaerde (Hoger Instituut voor Architectuurwetenschappen
Henry van de Velde,
Association Université Anvers) – 2008
Another copy to be consulted on British Library site
P. Fuhring & G. Luijten, Hollstein’s Dutch & Flemish Etchings, Engravings and Woodcuts
1450-1700, Vredeman de Vries 1572-1630, 48, 2, Rotterdam, Sound & Vision Interactive, 1997, pp. 109-121.
W. Kuyper, The Triumphant Entry of Renaissance Architecture into
the Netherlands. The Joyeuse Entrée of Philip of Spain into Antwerp in 1549, Renaissance and Manierism Architecture in the Low Countries from 1530 ti 1630, Alphen aan den Rijn, Canaletto, 1994,
1, p. 170.
J. Landwehr, Splendid Ceremonies State Entries and Royal Funerals in the Low Countries 1515-1791. A Bibliography, Nieuwkoop/Leiden,
De Graaf/Sijthoff, 1971, pp. 80-81.
H. Mielke, Hans Vredeman de Vries. Verzeichnis der Stichwerke und
Beschreibung seines Stils sowie Beiträge zum Werk Gerard Groennings,
PhD Dissertation, Freie Universität, Berlin, 1967, p.
H. M. C. Purkis, La magnifique Entrée de François
d’Anjou en sa ville d’Anvers, Anvers, Christofle Plantin,
MDLXXXII, A Facsimile with an Introduction, Amsterdam/New York,
Theatrum Orbis Terrarum Ltd/Johnson Reprint Corporation, 1973.
M. Rooses, Christophe Plantin, imprimeur anversois, Antwerp,
M. Sabbe, Christophe Plantin, Turnhout, Brepols, 1920.
F. J. van den Branden, Geschiedenis der Antwerpsche Schilderschool,
Antwerp, Buschmann, 1883, pp. 240-241.
C. van de Velde, "Hans Vredeman de Vries en de Blijde Intreden
te Antwerpen", H. Borggrefe, V. Lupkes, P. Huvenne & B.
Van Beneden (ed.), Hans Vredeman de Vries und die Renaissance
im Norden, Munich, Hirmer, 2002, pp. 81-88.
I. von Roeder-Baumbach & H. G. Evers, Versieringen bij Blijde
Inkomsten, Antwerp, De Sikkel, 1943, op. 16, 117-175.