Claude Mellan (1598–1688)
“Lot and his daughters”, 1629
The scene portrayed shows Lot's daughters encouraging their father to become drunk in order to seduce him and have his baby ... yikes! Although this engraving illustrates an Old Testament event, the frocks worn by the daughters are interestingly high fashion in the 1600s (so I understand) and I need to draw attention to the unfurling ribbon on the chest of the daughter on the left ... a fascinating detail!
Note that there is a copy of this print in reverse after Mellan that was engraved in 1634 by Claude Goyrand (c1610–1662) and published by Jean Vallet (fl1600–1636); later it was also published by Nicolas Contat (c1687–1754) (see BM no. 1851,1213.441).
Engraving on fine laid paper trimmed along the image borderline (retaining the text box) and backed with a support sheet.
Size: (sheet) 16.7 x 11.3 cm
Lettered on plate below the image borderline: “Quid flammas fugisse iuuat; Si Sæuir ignis / Incestâ accendit pectora casta face? (transl. What has fled from the flames of the poison; If the flaming fire / shocking the heart is pure, light a torch?) / 'l. Mellan Gallus pinx. et sculp. Romae. Sup. pm. 1629.”
State ii (of ii)
IFF 1 (Inventaire du Fonds Français: Bibliothèque Nationale, Département des Estampes, Paris, 1930); Montaiglon 1856 2 (Anatole de Montaiglon 1856, “Catalogue raisonné de l'oeuvre de Claude Mellan”, Abbeville).
See the British Museum’s description of this print:
Condition: crisp impression trimmed along the image borderline and laid upon a conservator’s support sheet of washi paper. There are replenished losses on the right edge of the sheet; otherwise the sheet is in good condition (i.e. there are no tears, holes significant stains or foxing).
I am selling this very beautiful and finely rendered engraving executed twenty years before Mellan completed his most famous print, “Sudarium of Saint Veronica” (Veil of St Veronica), 1649, which is one of the most acclaimed tour de force feats of engraving involving a single spiralled line fluctuating in its thickness to create the entire image of Christ’s head shown on a veil—the Sudarium—for the total cost of AU$364 (currently US$261.01/EUR229.61/GBP202.74 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 luminous and rare print, please contact me (email@example.com) and I will send you a PayPal invoice to make the payment easy.
This print has been sold
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