Nancy during the reign of Duke Stanislaus
By BELPREYS, Thomas , 1754

Plan General des deux villes de Nancy et des Nouveaux Edifices que sa Majeste le Roy de Pologne, Duc de Lorraine et de Bar &c.

Europe France
  • Author: BELPREYS, Thomas
  • Publication place: Nancy
  • Publisher: Belpreys
  • Publication date: 1754.
  • Physical description: Large engraved plan on four sheets joined.
  • Dimensions: 800 by 1230mm. (31.5 by 48.5 inches).
  • Inventory reference: 12184


The plan is dedicated to Stanislaus I King of Poland. Stanislaus, who had abdicated his throne in 1738, following the War of Polish Succession, was granted in compensation the Duchy of Lorraine. Under his nominal rule, Nancy experienced growth and a flowering of Baroque culture and architecture. With his death in 1766, the duchy became a regular French province and Nancy lost its position as a residential capital city with its own princely court and patronage.

The plan shows the Duke’s ambitious building scheme centred around the palace square which was designed to link the old medieval town with the new town built by Charles III in the seventeenth century. The square would also be a “place royale” to honour his son-in-law, Louis XV of France. The design linked two handsome buildings that already existed: the Hôtel de Ville (now centred on its grand square) and the Hôtel du Gouvernement. The seat of city government and the seat of ducal government faced each other as complements through a series of rational, symmetrical but varied urban spaces, unequalled in Europe at the time. Elevations of the buildings surround the present plan, together with the statue of Louis XV and the Triumphal Arch. Below is a key to the plan.

Rare OCLC records one institutional example in the BNF.