Gallery of prints for sale

Tuesday 18 December 2018

Philip James de Loutherbourg's etching, “Tranquillité Champêtre”, c1767.

Philip James de Loutherbourg (1740–1812)
“Tranquillité Champêtre” (Country tranquillity) (aka “Fluitspelende herder” [Flute-playing shepherd]), c1767.

Note: Although the publication details have been trimmed from this impression, I do not see evidence of the coat of arms that appears in later editions of this print when it was published by Lenfant (fl.1767), Mathenet (fl.1767) Aaron Martinet (1762–1841) and Maigret (fl.c1767–77) in Paris.

Etching on China or early wove paper trimmed with margins around the image borderline, but lacking the publication details below the image borderline, backed with a support sheet.
Size: (sheet) 28 x 22 cm; (image borderline) 26.9 x 21.1 cm.
Lettered on plate below the image borderline: (left) “Dessiné et gravé par P. J. Loutherbourg Peintre du Roi”.

State i? (of iv) my very tentative attribution of this impression to the first state (see  BM1868,1212.181) is because there is no evidence within the lower trimmed margin showing the top part of the coat of arms added in the later states.  Nevertheless, I do have a concern about the wove paper on which that this impression is printed. Although wove paper was commonly used in the 1800s there are examples of this type of paper used in publications dating back to 1757, consequently, a first state impression on wove (or China) paper is possible.

Portalis & Beraldi 4 (Roger Portalis & Henri Béraldi 1880–82, “Les graveurs du dix-huitième siècle”, Paris, Damascène Morgand et Charles Fatout, p. 752, 4); Baudicour 185961 II.247.I (P de Baudicour 1859–61, “Le Peintre-Graveur Français continue”, 2 vols, Paris).

The British Museum offers the following description of this print:
“A young shepherd, seated with his legs stretched out before him, playing flute; beside him, goats, sheep and cow, all lying, except for a standing cow, seen from behind, at centre.”
See also the description of this print offered by the Rijksmuseum:

Note that there is a preparatory drawing for this print held by the British Museum (see BM no.  1920,1116.34) and a pendant print, “La bonne petite soeur” (see BM no. 1868,1212.176).

Condition: richly inked and faultlessly printed impression trimmed with small margins around the image borderline but with loss of the publication details below the image borderline. The sheet has a flattened fold at upper left and restored tear of the upper right corner and other minor restorations, otherwise the sheet is in very good condition and has been laid onto a support sheet of archival (millennium quality) washi paper.

I am selling this Berchem inspired etching of rural bliss executed by the artist famous for creating the Eidophusikon—one of the first moving picture productions (albeit with mirrors and pulleys rather than celluloid photographic film)—for [deleted] 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 superb etching showcasing how farm workers in the 1700s were believed to spend their time (i.e. playing on their aulos instead of doing “real” work), 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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