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Sunday 26 January 2020

Philips Galle's engraving, “Tamesis”, 1586

Philips Galle (aka Philippe Galle; Philippus Gallaeus) (1537–1612)

“Tamesis” (aka “River God Tamesis”), 1586, plate 17 from the series of seventeen plates (TIB 5601.090:1 to 5601:090:17),“Semideorum Marinorum Amnicorumque Sigillariæ Imagines Perelegantes” (River and Sea Gods) (Hollstein 316-332 [Ph. Galle]), published by Philips Galle in Antwerp. offer a superb description of the publication of this series and images of the plates:

Engraving on laid paper, trimmed with thread margins close to the image borderline and backed with a support sheet.
Size: (sheet) 16.5 x 9.9 cm.
Lettered on plate below the image borderline: (left) "Phls Gall. inuen/ et Scalp.”); (centre) "TAMESIS." (Note that the plate number 17 has been erased similar to the copies in the Rijksmuseum [RP-P-1898-A-19961] and The Met [53.601.20(31)]).

State i (of ii) Note that the attribution of this impression to the first state is based on the text line being the same as the first state impression held by the Rijksmuseum (RP-P-1898-A-19961).
TIB 1987 5601.090:17 (Arno Dolders [ed.] 1987, “The Illustrated Bartsch: Netherlandish Artists: Philips Galle”, vol. 56, Supplement, New York, Abaris Books, p. 353); New Hollstein Dutch 429-1 (2) (Marjolein Leesberg & Manfred Sellink [comp.] 2001, Rotterdam, “The New Hollstein : Dutch and Flemish Etchings, Engravings and Woodcuts 1450–1700: Philips Galle”, Sound and Vision, p. 115; p. 133 [fig.], Cat. 429).

The Rijksmuseum offers the following description of this print:
“The river god Tamesis (the Thames), seated on a stone block. The cornucopia in his hands. The print is part of a seventeen-part series about river and sea gods”

Condition: well-printed impression with an abraded lower right corner (erasing the plate number “17”) and other small spots of abrasion, otherwise the sheet is in excellent condition (i.e. there are no tears, holes, folds, stains or foxing). The sheet has been trimmed with thread margins around the image borderline and has been laid upon a support sheet of archival (millennium quality) washi paper.

I am selling this visually arresting image of the weary river god of the Thames (Tamesis), engraved by one of the most famous old master engravers of the sixteen century, for AU$300 (currently US$203.93/EUR184.88/GBP156.12 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 marvellous print engraved only a couple of decades after Michelangelo put down his brushes after completing the “Last Judgement” in the Sistine Chapel, 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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