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Friday, 29 May 2020

Harmen Jansz. Muller’s engraving, “The Destruction of the House of Baal”, c.1567, after Maarten van Heemskerck


Harmen Jansz. Muller (1540–1617)

“The Destruction of the House of Baal” (aka “Verwoesting van Tempel van Baalia”, c.1567, after a drawing by Maarten van Heemskerck (aka Maarten van Veen; Martin Heemskerk) (1498–1574), plate 4 from the series, “The story of Joash and Queen Athaliah” (aka “Geschiedems Van Ioas en koningin Atalja”), with lettered Latin verses by Hadrianus Junius (1511–1575) below the image borderline, published in 1579 in “Prentbijbel met voorstellingen uit het Oude Testament” (Picture Bible with scenes from the Old Testament), Part 2, by Gerard de Jode (1516/17–1591) in Antwerp (see the description of this publication held by the Rijksmuseum: http://hdl.handle.net/10934/RM0001.COLLECT.324041).

Engraving on fine laid paper with watermark and full margins as published.
Size: (sheet) 28.5 x 37.7 cm; (plate) 18.7 x 24.7 cm.
Inscribed and numbered within the image borderline: (lower centre in reverse with letters “HMVL” interlaced) “HMVL FE”; (right of lower-centre with letters “MH” interlaced) “MHeemskerck In”; (lower-left corner) “4”.
Lettered in Latin below the image borderline: “Balicolas sacris operatos mactat & aris/ Excisis populus de marmore signa refringit 2. Regum.11.18.”
State ii (of ii) with the addition of the text reference (“2. Regum.11.18”) and repositioning of the plate number (“4”).

New Hollstein 32-2(2) (Heemskerck) (Ilja M Veldman [comp.] 1993-94, Roosendaal, “The New Hollstein: Dutch and Flemish Etchings, Engravings and Woodcuts 1450–1700: Maarten van Heemskerck”, vol. 1, Roosendaal, Koninklijke Van Poll, p. 123, cat. no. 142); New Hollstein 32-2(2) (Muller) (Ger Luijten & Christiaan Schuckman [eds.] 1999, “The New Hollstein: Dutch and Flemish Etchings, Engravings and Woodcuts 1450–1700: The Muller Dynasty”, vol. 1 Rotterdam, Rijksprentenkabinet, p. 111, cat. no. 32).

The British Museum offers the following description of this print:
“The destruction of the house of Baal; a group of soldiers pulling down a statue with a rope tied around its neck; another soldier attacking a priest with a halberd and other statues lying smashed on the ground; Jehoida and Joash, seen from behind, observing; after Heemskerck”

See also the description of this print at the Rijksmuseum and the Metropolitan Museum of Art:

Condition: near faultless impression (showing no sign of wear to the printing plate) on very fine laid paper with generous margins. The sheet is in exceptionally good—museum quality—condition (i.e. there are no tears, holes, folds, losses, abrasions, significant stains or foxing), but there are remnants of mounting verso.

I am selling this rare print—in the sense that the print is seldom seen on the art market—executed by the father of Jan Harmensz. Muller for AU$233 (currently US$155.04/EUR139.70/GBP125.77 at the time of posting this listing) including postage and handling to anywhere in the world (but not, of course, any import duties/taxes imposed by some countries).

If you are interested in purchasing this fascinating scene of the Temple of Baal being destroyed and the priests killed—note that the hand of the high priest (Jehoiada) is held by the seven-year-old king (Joash)—please contact me (oz_jim@printsandprinciples.com) and I will send you a PayPal invoice to make the payment easy.

This print has been sold











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