Gallery of prints for sale

Monday 17 October 2022

François Bonvin’s etching, “Fileuse Bretonne”, 1861

François Bonvin (1817–1887)

“Fileuse Bretonne” (Breton Spinner), 1861, plate 2 in the series of ten plates, “Première suite d'eaux-fortes” (see description of the title plate:, printed by Auguste Delâtre (aka Auguste Marie Delâtre) (1822–1907). This impression was published in Paris by Alfred Cadart (1828–1875) in the first portfolio edition showing partial erasure of the inscribed artist’s name and with full erasure of the plate number, “2”, and location, “Guingamp”. Following this edition, Cadart’s name as publisher was erased and the publication details for “L'Art” were added with A Clément (fl. c1887–1892) as printer.

Etching on laid paper.

Size: (sheet) 33.5 x 27.4 cm; (plate) 27.8 x 21.7 cm (image borderline) 26.8 x 21.7 cm.

Inscribed in plate within the image borderline, partially erased along the lower edge: the name of the printer, the artist and the date.

Lettered in plate below the image borderline: (left) “F. Bonvin, del. et sc.”; (centre) “FILEUSE BRETONNE.”; (right) “A Cadart,Edit.Imp.56,BardHaussmann,Paris.”

Impression before lettering with publication details for “L'Art” and printer details for A Clément.

Beraldi 2.4 (Henri Béraldi 1885, “Les graveurs du XIXe siècle: Guide de l'amateur d'estampes modernes: BELLANGÉ–BOVINET”, vol. 2, Paris, Librairie L. Conquet, p. 164, cat. no. 2.4 [see]); IFF 7 (Inventaire du Fonds Français: Bibliothèque Nationale, Départment des Estampes. Bibliothèque nationale de France, Paris, 1930–, p. 136, cat. no. 7).

The British Museum offers the following description of this print: “Old country woman, seated on chair, in profile to the left, spinning wool” ( ).

Condition: a richly inked and well-printed impression in near pristine condition with no tears, holes, folds, abrasions, stains, foxing or signs of handling.

I am selling this historically interesting and beautiful etching of a domestic scene showing a woman in the Brittany region town of Guingamp (north-western France) spinning wool and holding what was a symbol of power for women at the time, the distaff (spindle staff)—a fearful weapon used with great force on errant men—for AU$288 in total (currently US$180.03/EUR184.62/GBP159.73 at the time of posting this listing) including Express Mail (EMS) 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 remarkably fine etching, please contact me ( and I will send you a PayPal invoice to make the payment easy.

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