Gallery of prints for sale

Thursday 28 October 2021

Engraving from the circle of Hieronymus Cock, “David Talks to Soldiers about Goliath”, c1556, after Maarten van Heemskerck

Unidentified engraver from the circle of Hieronymus Cock (aka Jérome Cock) (c1517/18-1570)

“David Talks to Soldiers about Goliath” (aka “David spreekt met soldaten over Goliat”), c1556, plate 4 from the series of ten plates (New Hollstein 94–103),Story of David and Saul” (aka “Verhaal van David en Saul”), after a related drawing in the École des Beaux-Arts, Paris (inv. M 1703) by Maarten van Heemskerck (aka Martin Heemskerk; Maarten van Veen) (1498–1574), initially published in Antwerp by Hieronymus Cock and later by Theodoor Galle (aka Theodor Galle; Dirck Galle) (1571–1633).

Engraving on laid paper with a small margin around the platemark.

Size: (sheet) 22.2 x 28.5 cm; (plate) 20.4 x 25.3 cm; (image borderline) 19.7 x 24.9 cm.

Numbered in plate within the image borderline: (lower left corner) “.4.”.

Lettered in plate below the image borderline: “Annūciata sunt verba que locutus est Dauid in conspectu Regis . i. Re . i7 .” (Transl. “The words that David spoke were announced in the presence of the King”).

New Hollstein Dutch 97 (Ilja Veldman [comp.] 1993/4, “The new Hollstein: Dutch and Flemish Etchings, Engravings and Woodcuts 1450–1700: Maarten van Heemskerck”, vol. 1, Roosendaal, Koninklijke Van Poll, p. 93, cat. no. 97); Riggs 137 (Timothy A[llan] Riggs 1976, “Hieronymus Cock (1510–1570): Printmaker and Publisher in Antwerp at the Sign of the Four Winds”, Ann Arbor, p. 344, cat. no. 137).

The Rijksmuseum offers the following description of this print:

(Transl.) “David visits the camp where his brothers are encamped and asks the soldiers what happens to the person who defeats the Philistine Goliath in the background, after which they tell him about the rewards. One of the soldiers he is talking to may be his brother Eliab. Behind this scene is Saul. In the margin a one-line caption in Latin from 1 Sam. (Incorrectly indicated as 1 Kings on the print)” (

See also the description offered by the British Museum:

Condition: a strong early/lifetime impression still retaining the scratched guide lines for the lettering, with small margins in museum quality/near pristine condition (i.e., there are no tears, holes, folds, abrasions, stains, foxing or signs of handling) for its considerable age.  

I am selling this finely executed engraving showing David at right holding his sheep herding crook while discussing a plan to battle with the imposingly gigantic and rather skimpily clad (in my opinion) Goliath in the far distance, for AU$289 in total (currently US$217.36/EUR187.14/GBP157.93 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. Note that this large sheet will be rolled in a tube for shipping.

If you are interested in purchasing this superb example of the period style known as Mannerism—note the grand gestures, the exaggerated movements and the compaction/crowding of figures in the scene as well as the theatrical lighting—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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