Matthaus Merian ( 1593 - 1650)

Matthaus Merian (1593-1650) was a Swiss publisher and engraver born in Basel who in 1615 moved to Germany where he worked for Johan Theodor de Bry. In 1617, Merian married Maria Magdalena de Bry, daughter of the publisher, and for a time associated with the de Bry publishing house. In 1620 they moved back to Basel, but three years later returned to Frankfurt. They had four daughters and three sons, including Matthäus Merian the Younger. Maria Magdalena de Bry died in 1645 and the following year Matthäus married Johanna Catharina Hein. Five years later, Matthäus died, leaving his wife with two small children, Anna Maria Sibylla Merian (born 1647) who later became a pioneering naturalist and illustrator.
In 1623 Merian took over the publishing house of his father-in-law after de Bry’s death. In 1626 he became a citizen of Frankfurt and could therefore work as an independent publisher. He spent most of his working life in Frankfurt.

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