• JohannTheodor de Bry

    1561-1623, belonged to a noted family of engravers from Frankfurt. De Bry's father, Theodor, a draughtsman, engraver and goldsmith, was born in Liège but eventually transferred to Frankfurt, where he set up a printing shop. De Bry and his brother Johann Isräel, after learning the rudiments of their trade in these modest surroundings, went on to become two of the most talented and prolific engravers of their time. 'The unsurpassed artistry for which de Bry was renowned throughout Europe emerges clearly in the plates of this florilegium. Each has been carefully composed, and the confident lines of the engraving, with their fine shading, denote the hand of a true master' (Tongiori-Tomasi, An Oak Spring Flora p. 48). Although most of the plates are original images, De Bry freely copied and adapted earlier florilegia as well, in particular Vallet's Jardin du Roy (1608), many of whose plates were modified by de Bry for this work by adding root and bulb structures and additional foliage. De Bry's plates were in turn copied by later florilegists, such as Sweert. Some images are shared with Besler's Hortus Eystettensis (1613) but in this case it is not certain who copied whom. 'Many non-European plants appear in the Florilegium novum...