DAHLBERG, Erik Jonsson, Count (1625-1703). Suecia Antiqua et Hodierna. [Stockholm: 1699-1715 and later].

$ 10,000.00

DAHLBERG, Erik Jonsson, Count (1625-1703). Suecia Antiqua et Hodierna. [Stockholm: 1699-1715 and later].

3 volumes. Oblong folio (12 x 15 2/8 inches). Engraved title-pages to volumes II and III only (trimmed and laid down), one portrait of King Charles XI of Sweden, and 26 double-page or folding, 167 full-page, and 80 trimmed and laid down (making a total of 276 or 354) etched and engraved plates of maps, plans, and views by various engravers including J. van den Aveele, Willem Swidde, Jean Marot, Jean Le Pautre, A. Perelle, J. J. von Sandrart, and E. Reitz, most after Count Dahlberg's drawings (some browning, some staining to old folds). Modern brown morocco, gilt.

In 1661 Count Dahlberg, Governor of Livonia and Chancellor of the University of Tartu (Estonia), obtained a commission from the Swedish goverment to compile a visual archive of the country's architectural treasures. A team of 18 engravers was hired to transfer his drawings to copperplate (a few of the drawings were by David Klocker-Ehrenstrahl and Elias Brenner). Per Lagerlf wrote a Latin text, but it was only partially printed and never published (it appears in a few copies). It took 21 years to complete the printing of the plates, and the sheets continued to be published throughout the 18th and into the 19th century. During the years in storage many sheets suffered damage to the margins; later issues are thus often characterized by renewed margins. A small number of copies were issued in 1772, with a new title-page bearing that date. 

Dahlberg was a renowned soldier and engineer from Stockholm. "His early studies took the direction of the science of fortification, and as an engineer officer he saw service in the latter years of the Thirty Years’ War, and in Poland. As adjutant-general and engineer adviser to Charles X. (Gustavus), he had a great share in the famous crossing of the frozen Belts, and at the sieges of Copenhagen and Kronborg he directed the engineers. In spite of these distinguished services, Dahlberg remained an obscure lieutenant-colonel for many years. His patriotism, however, proved superior to the tempting offers Charles II. of England made to induce him to enter the British service, though, in that age of professional soldiering, there was nothing in the offer that a man of honour could not accept. At last his talents were recognized, and in 1676 he became director-general of fortifications. In the wars of the next twenty-five years Dahlberg again rendered distinguished service, alike in attack (as at Helsingborg in 1677, and Dünamünde in 1700) and defence (as in the two sieges of Riga in 1700): and his work in repairing the fortresses of his own country, not less important, earned for him the title of the “Vauban of Sweden.” He was also the founder of the Swedish engineer corps. He retired as field-marshal in 1702, and died the following year" (Encyclopedia Britannica).

In addition to his Suecia Antiqua et Moderna / Hodierna (Stockholm, 1660–1716; 2nd edition, 1856; 3rd edition, 1864–1865), Dahlberg assisted Pufendorf in his Histoire de Charles X Gustave. He wrote a memoir of his life (to be found in Svenska Bibliotek, 1757) and an account of the campaigns of Charles X. (ed. Lundblad, Stockholm, 1823). Berlin Katalog 2256; Brunet V, 578. Catalogued by Kate Hunter