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Wednesday 15 July 2020

Jost Amman’s woodcut, “The Apocalyptic Woman and the Seven-Headed Dragon”, c1564

Jost Amman (aka Jost Ammon) (1539–1591)

“The Apocalyptic Woman and the Seven-Headed Dragon” (TIB title), c1564, woodcut illustration after the design by Johann Melchior Bocksberger (1525/35–1587) to Neue Biblische Figuren des Alten und Neuen Testaments”, published and printed by Sigmund Feierabend (1528–1590), Georg Rab (fl.1557–1580) and Weygand Han (fl.c.1550–1564) in Frankfurt am Main in 1564 (see This plate was also used in “Biblia” (aka “The Complete Holy Bible in German [translated by] Martin Luther”) published in Frankfurt am Main in 1565 (see full title and publication details in TIB, vol. 20, part 1, p. 244]).

For those unfamiliar with the subject illustrated by this woodcut, the description of the scene is from the “Book of Revelations”, Chapter 12, Verses 1–5 (NIV translation) “The Woman and the Dragon”:
“A great sign appeared in heaven: a woman clothed with the sun, with the moon under her feet and a crown of twelve stars on her head.
She was pregnant and cried out in pain as she was about to give birth.
Then another sign appeared in heaven: an enormous red dragon with seven heads and ten horns and seven crowns on its heads.
Its tail swept a third of the stars out of the sky and flung them to the earth. The dragon stood in front of the woman who was about to give birth, so that it might devour her child the moment he was born”

Woodcut on early laid paper with German letterpress text verso, trimmed close to the image borderline and backed with a support sheet.
Size: (sheet) 11.4 x 15.7 cm; (image borderline) 11.2 x 15.5 cm.
Lifetime impression (based on the quality of the line showing minimal signs of wear to the printing plate).

TIB 20 (9).1.132 (365) (Jane S Peters [ed.] 1985, “The Illustrated Bartsch: German Masters of the Sixteenth Century: Jost Amman: Intaglio Prints and Woodcuts”, vol. 20 [Part 1], New York, Abaris Books, p. 317, cat. no. 1.132 [365]).

Condition: strong/near faultless impression (with German letterpress text verso minimally visible) trimmed with a narrow margin around the image borderline and laid upon an archival support sheet of millennium quality washi paper. The sheet has mellowed with age-toning appropriate to its considerable age and is in excellent condition (i.e. there are no tears, holes, folds, losses, abrasions, stains, foxing or signs of use).

I am selling this high quality woodcut from 1564 by one of the most famous of the German old master printmakers, for AU$288 (currently US$201.86/EUR176.43/GBP159.95 at the time of 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 superb old-master woodcut showing the eagle-winged woman of the apocalypse adorned with twelve stars standing on a crescent, with God above her receiving her new-born child, while the seven-headed beast is subdued by an angel amongst stars, please contact me ( and I will send you a PayPal invoice to make the payment easy.

This print has been sold

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